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Thursday, May 26, 2022

Software Connects Humans and Robots

InVia Robotics, a Westlake Village company that makes robots used in warehouses, has partnered with Rufus Labs, makers of wearable warehouse technology and workforce analytics software.

The collaboration between inVia and Rufus in Los Angeles aims to address warehouse labor shortages and allow warehouse employees to work more efficiently, the companies said in a release.

The combination of Rufus wearable products with inVia’s Picker robots ensures a continuous flow of orders through a warehouse that increases picking rates with existing labor. The Picker robots autonomously retrieve items and bring them to a stationary picker, who is directed by inVia PickMate software running in Rufus Android wearables and tablets to scan the items, place them in an order bin and then scan the bin, the companies said.

The cycle is always improving through use of inVia Logic and Rufus WorkHero software to create the most efficient movement of goods and people throughout the warehouse to increase productivity, the companies added.

Lior Elazary, chief executive and co-founder of inVia Robotics, said that inVia Logic software alone doubles a worker’s productivity and paves the way to later quadruple productivity once the Picker robots are used.“With the added efficiencies introduced with Rufus Labs’ wearable technology, we expect productivity to reach new highs in our shared customers’ facilities,” Elazary said in a statement.

Cargo Cove Fulfillment, a third-party logistics company in Jacksonville, Fla., is the first client of inVia to use its Picker robots and the Rufus technology, the company said. The technology will be deployed in a warehouse in Jacksonville. Cargo Cove expects to double productivity as a result of the joint integration.“Our phased approach is ideal for (third-party logistics companies), letting them adopt new technology at their own pace across their brands and incrementally increase efficiencies over time,” Elazary said in a statement.

Elazary was referring to inVia’s robotics-as-a-service model that has clients only paying for the services they use.

InVia was started in 2015 by Elazary and co-founders Dan Parks, chief operations officer, and Randolph Voorhies, chief technology officer. The company has more than 400 of its robots working in warehouses used by e-commerce companies.Rufus Labs was founded in 2013. Its flagship product is the WorkHero system, combining wearable technology with analytics software. The full Rufus Labs product line includes barcode scanners with ring, glove or palm wearable attachments.

Chief Executive Gabe Grifoni said that optimizing humans and robots in the warehouse setting is key to future sustainability, increased productivity and ensuring a safe environment for workers.

“Rufus WorkHero already cuts pick time in half and provides added safety features to pickers,” Grifoni said in a statement. “Our partnership with inVia will continue to improve throughput for our mutual customers and allow for future innovations between humans and machines.”

Mark Madler
Mark Madler
Mark R. Madler covers aviation & aerospace, manufacturing, technology, automotive & transportation, media & entertainment and the Antelope Valley. He joined the company in February 2006. Madler previously worked as a reporter for the Burbank Leader. Before that, he was a reporter for the City News Bureau of Chicago and several daily newspapers in the suburban Chicago area. He has a bachelor’s of science degree in journalism from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

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