We don’t need coffee
ZenRobotics still claims that its robot have the ability to sort for 8000 hours per year, compared to 1000 hours for humans, taking into account breaks. “The robots can be used in three shifts, seven days per week, so that’s roughly 8000 hours per year and the robots don’t require coffee breaks or anything,” adds the CEO.
Although current clients are not using the robots in this full three shift pattern, some are achieving 15 hours per day.
Another development is the ability to for this second generation robot to differentiate not just between different materials, say wood from brick, but to identify sub-fractions for materials.
The robots can also be “trained”. Talaas believes this flexibility makes the business case for buying a robot even stronger, as it can be trained if the feedstock for a facility, or regulation, changes in the future.
“We have had one case where one customer was previously picking all the wood into one chute,” he says. “When the business changed they suddenly wanted to pick different grades of wood so they could get a better price for the picked materials,” he adds. “We did the retraining, which took three days. After those three days the system was able to pick the new fractions and the customer was happy.”