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Tompkins xChange

Tompkins Robotics has created a new robotic application to automate the exit process on a unit sortation order fulfillment system. This innovative system, called xChange, uses a robot to remove completed order containers from a sortation process and place empty order containers in position. Now, for the first time ever, xChange, combines a fully-automated unit sortation system with an autonomous container removal system, reducing the costs and labor requirements of distribution in a fulfillment center. Tompkins Robotics teamed with IAM Robotics to provide an original line of industrial robots to fulfill the vision of xChange based on IAM Robotics' latest robot model, Atlas. This robot joins the Tompkins Robotics' automation fulfillment line as a solution designed for high-demand throughput requirements. With its revolutionary industrial design and capability, companies can reap the benefits of a truly automated sortation system. Typically, a unit sorter system utilizes an associate to manually sort items from an accumulation chute to unique order containers and place the containers onto a takeaway conveyor. By contrast, our robotic sortation system allows most orders to be sorted directly into an order container, and xChange automatically removes and replaces the container, completely automating the sortation/ order fulfillment exit process.

Tompkins Robotics can now deliver end-to-end fulfillment capabilities, including goods-to-person inventory delivery, pick-and-place induction robotics, t-Sort robotic sortation, the new xChange system, and automated packaging. This end-to-end automation of the entire fulfillment operation from storage to packaging—creates tremendous cost, labor, and space savings while optimizing performance through increased capacity, improved accuracy, 24/7 capability, faster cycle times, and industry-leading ROI.

Mike Futch, CEO and President of Tompkins Robotics shared, "We are proud to unveil this breakthrough automation technology with our partner, IAM Robotics. This collaboration combines the strengths of both companies to put the final puzzle piece together to maximize fulfillment automation for our industry."

The Atlas robot used for the xChange system is packed with innovative features, including a robust design with a fully-configurable tote tower and a mobile base with rechargeable Lithium-ion battery technology and direct drive wheels. The wheels provide unmatched force/torque compliance for safety (able to be effortlessly moved even when unpowered).

"We are excited to partner with Tompkins to provide a fully-automated sortation/order fulfillment exit process," said Tom Galluzzo, CEO and founder of IAM Robotics. "The collaboration between our robotic systems will be a game-changer for logistics."

xChange is based on Atlas, an autonomous mobile robot (AMR) designed for handling and transporting materials within and between zones inside a traditional warehouse environment. Atlas provides flexibility for various tote sizes with configurable vertical shelf positions, making it the perfect fit for the foundation of xChange.

While humans are still very much a part of warehouse fulfillment, the robotic future is now. Robotics and automation will help with operational demands to advance productivity, reduce costs, and meet the speed and dynamic nature of today's fulfillment requirements. The rapid changes brought about in order fulfillment by COVID-19, greater online orders, worker safety, worker shortages, capacity constraints, and other factors will be minimized through the use of xChange. Full, end-to-end, robotic automation is a reality with Tompkins Robotics' portfolio of solutions.

Labels: Tompkins,xChange,automation,sortation,autonomous,robotic,manufacturing

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