Although in automated warehouses lifting operations are carried out by robots or forklifts, there are certain activities which, given their complexity, can only be done by humans. Thinking about the level of effort required by those working in this area, DB Schenken announced in a press release that it has successfully tested an exoskeleton project that promises to improve worker ergonomics.
For the German supply chain management and logistics company, the development and implementation of smart technology devices is nothing new. Previously, he had made known to the industrial logistics industry ProGlove, a glove that lets you scan barcodes of products in stock.
The technological devices developed by the company are electromechanical support structures that are carried with the body. In addition to supporting the movements made by workers, protecting the lumbar vertebrae and back muscles, the use of exoskeletons can prevent diseases caused by repeated efforts and accidents that may disabling employees.
After developing the project based on the study of technology in the area of logistics in industry, the German company first tested it in warehouses. Equipped with exoskeletons, the workers were able to move packages up to 15 kilograms, being supported by the equipment in their duties.
The exoskeleton testing project was also attended by 20 college students as part of a summer program at the University of Dortmund, Germany.
For now, despite the success of the tests, the technology is still under development, and has not yet a scheduled date of arrival at warehouses worldwide. “In the coming months, we will analyze the results of the study in depth and see if the exoskeletons will definitely be included in DB Schenker's process optimization area,” said Gerald Mueller, the company's head of Process Management and Efficiency, in a press release.