Set on a platform that moved back and forth, the robot was doing a job usually carried out by warehouse workers and forklift operators. The goal of the company that's developing it, Mujin, is total automation.
The system, still a prototype, doesn't work perfectly — it accidentally damaged a box during the demo — but it's going to be trialed in warehouses in Japan this year.
"Lifting heavy boxes is probably the most backbreaking task in warehouse logistics," said Mujin's American co-founder and CTO, Rosen Diankov. "A lot of companies are looking for truck unloading systems, and I believe we're the closest to commercialization."
The Tokyo-based start-up is aiming to be a leader in automating logistics processes. To do that, it's building robot controllers and camera systems and integrating them with existing industrial robot arms.