There are a lot of robots that can self-balance and move, while some other robots can pick up and carry objects, but the prototype evoBOT can do both. It was created by experts at the Fraunhofer Institute for Material Flow and Logistics in Germany and uses what is known as the movable inverted pendulum principle to stay upright. Simply put, the bottom of the robot is constantly moving back and forth to keep the top weight of the robot centered on the robot.
The evoBOT has motorized wheels at the bottom of its legs and two arms with inward-facing disc-shaped grasp pads at each end to pick up objects. Different types of grippers can be used depending on the scenario. The arms fold and sit next to the legs when the robot is not holding anything. Then it may lean forward and roll at up to 10 meters per second.
evoBOT has two optical cameras and other sensors that enable the robot to travel autonomously across areas such as warehouses, avoiding obstacles and ascending ramps, ledges, and uneven terrain. This setup features a powered wheel in the back and a non-powered caster wheel on the underside of the extended arm in front.
evoBOT is intended to serve as a testbed for new self-balancing robotic technologies, but it might potentially be manufactured commercially as a product in its own right. In the video below you can see the evoBOT in action.
Amazon also uses “fully autonomous mobile robots” in its warehouses. The robot is meant to move large carts throughout its warehouses. The robot is called Proteus, and Amazon says it can safely navigate around human employees, unlike some of the past robots that it kept separated in a caged area. Similarly, evoBot carries objects to warehouses and locations where they are in use and releases items when they reach their destination.