Skip to content
    ← SCIO Updates

    Autonomous forklift overcomes safety challenges at elevated delivery stations

    Autonomous forklift overcomes safety challenges at elevated delivery stations

    The AFi not only transports loads from A to B - it also masters complex challenges that can arise when placing products on work platforms. A common situation that requires special attention is when the desired drop-off point is at a higher level. In such cases, the safety and collision-free operation of the transported load and the autonomous forklift as well as the protection of people in the immediate surrounding area play a decisive role.

    Using the safety components and the advanced route editor, the AFi is able to deliver loads autonomously to predefined delivery points without human intervention. It therefore offers an ideal solution for autonomous material handling, which guarantees safety within customer-specific intralogistics.

    To meet these requirements, the AFi uses three of its four advanced 2D safety scanners with Performance Level D to drive precisely and safely around the area. Two of them are located in the direction of travel and the other in the direction of the fork.

    When approaching the delivery station, the AFi moves in the opposite direction to its actual direction of travel with the transported load. Thanks to the combination of the location information stored in the route editor and the floor scanner in the direction of the forks, the AFi recognizes the drop-off point or any obstacles in front of it.

    But what if the desired drop-off point is on a platform or an elevated spot?

    Since the delivery station is stored in the route editor of the AFi, it will not recognize it as an obstacle.
    As soon as it recognizes the delivery position, it will position itself in front of the platform to deliver the load to it. The challenge here is that it cannot secure the area on the platform with its safety scanners at floor level due to their two-dimensional range of vision. If the stacker were to set the load down now, the raised delivery area would not be secured.

    To ensure that the autonomous forklift can master this challenge and meet the high demands of occupational safety and compliance with the standards, a further 2D safety sensor was integrated, which can be adjusted in height on the fork side.

    Depending on the height of the lift, it automatically moves under or over the forks and scans the platform under the containers. The loads are only placed safely when the area is clear. This ensures that the forks with the load do not endanger people at the delivery station or collide with obstacles.

    The innovative combination of precise autonomous navigation and intelligent safety systems with automated height adjustment make the AFi a pioneer in autonomous transport delivery. With these capabilities, it also creates new opportunities for efficient and safe logistics processes in existing intralogistics.

    Look forward to the next articles, in which we will show you even more features of our height-adjustable safety scanner!

    See the safety scanners in action and experience the impressive capabilities of the AFi in the following animation: