BOSTON—At the Autonomous Mobile Robots and Logistics Week here, InOrbit Inc. today announced the launch of a Developer Edition of its cloud-based robot operations, or RobOps, software.
The Mountain View, Calif.-based company added that it has collaborated with leading robotics developers and expanded its InOrbit Connect program. The goal is to enable end users in logistics and other industries to easily integrate systems from multiple vendors into their operations, it said.
“We like to say InOrbit supports the 'three Cs' of robot orchestration: coexistence, coordination, and collaboration,” noted Florian Pestoni, co-founder and CEO of InOrbit. “When robot developers participate in InOrbit Connect through one of our interoperability options, they can focus on delivering their unique value. End users can then pick the best robots for their operations.”
Developer Edition builds on existing offerings
InOrbit said its platform enables efficient autonomous mobile robot (AMR) operations. It provides observability through secure, real-time analytics and data collection, robot performance monitoring, incident response, and root-cause analysis.
The newly launched InOrbit Developer Edition builds on the existing InOrbit Developer Portal, the Free Edition, and InOrbit Connect. The company said it empowers developers to cost-effectively build tailored systems for their unique needs and customers.
InOrbit Connect orchestrates fleets
Industry leaders in logistics, retail, hospitality, and manufacturing face a growing need for multi-robot, multi-site, multi-task, and multi-vendor robot operations. InOrbit Connect allows users to orchestrate robots for multiple tasks to optimize productivity, said the company. It claimed that InOrbit Connect is the first industry-wide certification program for integrating smart robots into end-user operations.
The number of robot models certified by InOrbit Connect has grown over 300% and can orchestrate heterogeneous fleets, the company said.
InOrbit Connect integrates robots through the native InOrbit Agent, the Robot SDK (software development kit), or commercial fleet management software. End users can find the latest InOrbit Connect-certified robots in its Robot Directory.
Open source, partners, and interoperability
InOrbit Connect works with emerging interoperability standards such as VDA 5050 and MassRobotics' AMR Interoperability Standard. The company said it has long been committed to the open-source movement pushing the automation industry forward. It participated in last year’s release of a MassRobotics connector.
Clearpath Robotics Inc. and InOrbit, with participation by Ekumen, have jointly contributed a new open-source package on Github. It allows any robot running on ROS2, the latest edition of the Robot Operating System, to comply with the European VDA 5050 interoperability standard for AMRs.
Clearpath and InOrbit said they hope to accelerate industry adoption of robotics. OTTO Motors, a division of Clearpath, is already using this software package to integrate its commercial AMRs for material handling with VDA master controllers like InOrbit.
“Connecting VDA5050 to ROS2 is a major step forward for the industry because now AMRs can realize greater value for the largest customers who are unwilling or unable to standardize on a single AGV or AMR platform,” said Ryan Gariepy, co-founder and chief technology officer at Clearpath and OTTO Motors.
“The connector enables VDA 5050-compliant master controllers to manage potentially any ROS2-based AMR in addition to the AGVs [automated guided vehicles] they already support,” he said. “This gives facility owners a 'single pane of glass' for material handling management and reduces the risk of vendor lock-in.”
InOrbit is also expanding its ecosystem of partners in Europe by collaborating with Mobile Industrial Robots (MiR), a unit of Teradyne. As a MiR Go partner, InOrbit Connect can now manage MiR robots at sites worldwide, said the companies.
Demos at A3 event
The Association for Advancing Automation (A3) is presenting AMR and Logistics Week, which is co-located with The Vision Show at the Hynes Convention Center. The events run from Monday, Oct. 10, through Friday, Oct. 14.
InOrbit will participate in a panel on “Standardization Efforts for Mobile Robot Interoperability” from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. ET on Tuesday, Oct. 11.
The company will also participate in a demonstration with MassRobotics and Locus Robotics at Booth 1022 from 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. ET on Wednesday, Oct. 12.
In addition, InOrbit and OTTO Motors will demonstrate AMR interoperability connected with protocols following the VDA 5050 standard from 1:00 to 1:30 p.m. ET on Oct. 12. The company also plans to participate in the EDGE Computing World event, ROSCon, and RoboBusiness in the coming weeks.
See Robotics 24/7's special coverage page, and we will be reporting from A3's events this week.