Panasonic unveils autonomous tomato picker in Tokyo

The automation of repetitive tasks in construction and manufacturing has been around for some time. Last month, Panasonic introduced an agricultural robot at Tokyo’s International Robot Exhibition that could have implications for workers in the fruit-picking business.



To handle the perception and dexterity-related challenges that come with fruit picking, Panasonic’s new robot relies on a combination of camera, range image sensor and artificial intelligence technologies.

First, it recognizes which tomatoes are ready to be picked. Then, it performs a precise cut-and-catch technique to move each tomato from vine to bucket.

The robot can be mounted on a rail, enabling it to slide along one vine from start to finish. In terms of speed, Panasonic expects the robot to perform at least as well as a human, harvesting at an average pace of 10 tomatoes per minute.

Read more at Internet of Business (Malek Murison)

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