Silicon Collar looks at machines and humans at work in over 50 settings across industries and countries. On this blog I will excerpt many of those settings over the next few weeks. On Deal Architect I will excerpt more of the policy parts of the book.
Our county has 95-gallon garbage bin with sensors which allow for easy verification if a street has not been serviced. They are emptied into garbage trucks equipped with McNeilus AutoReach robotic arms.
Amaury, the driver operates a Republic Services truck, and he visits our street twice a week. He operates the robotic arm from the cab of his truck. In a full day he can gather over 1,200 bins, twice as many as he previously did with a human partner. Amaury no longer needs the associate dangling at the back of the truck doing a dangerous and stinky job. The contribution of the robotic arm: half the human resources, twice the production, and a much less tiring job.
The Volvo Group is planning to take such garbage collection into narrower streets and to places where the weather is not as pleasant as in my Florida county. Its Robot-based Autonomous Refuse (ROAR) project entails much more than a truck with a robotic arm. A robot carried at the back of the truck will zip around the streets and bring the garbage bins to the truck. A drone launched from the truck’s roof will scan the area and guide the robot to the bins.
The garbage bin itself is evolving and will further change the collection of garbage. BigBelly makes solar powered trash compactors, which can hold eight times more garbage than a standard bin. Volume sensors trigger the compacting mechanism and the bin communicates with a cloud-based management system which coordinates collections.