Hyundai Construction Equipment develops driverless autonomous forklift
Hyundai Construction Equipment (HCE) has become the first Korean company to develop driverless forklift trucks, set to hit the market this month. HCE recently held a product pitch event attended by about 100 guests including some major clients, where it unveiled and demonstrated its newly developed autonomous forklift model as well as related technologies.
This self-driving forklift showcased at the event can determine optimal routes and can be remotely controlled using a routing control system HCE developed along with it. It also has onboard a vehicle control system that features 2D safety laser scanners that can perceive the surroundings of the vehicle and detect obstacles in the direction of the vehicle path to prevent contact with them.
Autonomous forklifts drive up productivity by speeding up logistical processes and optimizing warehouse space utilization. They also greatly reduce the risk of accidents on industrial sites as they move along pre-planned paths.
With these benefits, self-driving forklifts can greatly contribute to improving operational efficiency in warehouses where work mostly involves repetitive tasks, small and compact space or other industrial sites where 24-hour unmanned operation is required. They are particularly expected to cater the needs of manufacturing companies that have adopted smart factory environments which provide plant managers with remote access to wirelessly connected equipment and machines.
In preparation for the Fourth Industrial Revolution, HCE has proactively engaged in smart solution logistics businesses. Further to the recently unveiled autonomous forklifts, the manufacturer is ambitiously planning to complete by the end of this year the development of a battery control system for managing remaining voltage and a wireless charging system.
“As the market environment increasingly requires improved operational efficiency, automated and unmanned solutions for logistics processes are attracting a growing level of attention and demand,” said an official of HCE. “We are poised to take the lead in shaping the Fourth Industrial Revolution by focusing on developing advanced solutions for logistics.”
According to US research and consulting company MarketsandMarkets’ recent report, the global market for automated guided vehicles (AGVs), including autonomous forklifts, is estimated to grow from USD 1.86 billion in 2018 to USD 2.74 billion by 2023, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.02% for this period.