Machinery : Industrial Robot : Piece Picking
RightHand Robotics was founded in 2015 by a DARPA challenge-winning team from the Harvard Biorobotics Lab, the Yale GRAB Lab, and MIT. Our founders learned from that competition that you can make a capable robotic gripper by combining a compliant smart mechanism and sensing that could improve through practical experience. But it’s not enough to just build cool technology. You make a difference when you fix customer problems. So we started RightHand Robotics to focus on solving the “holy grail” of warehouse automation: piece-picking for supply chain and e-commerce fulfillment. We took the grasping knowhow, combined it with computer vision and AI, and spoke to over a hundred end-users across a dozen industry verticals to gauge market appetite and define use cases. It quickly became clear that the demand for such a piece-picking machine was real and growing. In just a few short years, our company has assembled a world class team that’s committed to our mission and vision. We launched our autonomous robotic piece-picking product in 2017, developed key partnerships in Europe, Japan, and the U.S. and deployed fleets of robots for customers around the world. Tens of millions of picks into our journey, we continue to learn every day…as do our robots.
RightHand Robotics Secures $66 Million in Series C Funding
RightHand Robotics, a leader in data-driven, autonomous robotic picking solutions for order fulfillment, announces today that it has secured $66 million in a Series C financing led by top growth investors: Safar Partners, a technology venture fund; Thomas H. Lee Partners L.P. (“THL”), a leading investor in automation and supply chain; and SoftBank Vision Fund 2, which is part of the SoftBank Group. Zebra Technologies, Epson and Global Brain also join this round, along with previous investors GV, F-Prime Capital, Menlo Ventures, Matrix Partners and Tony Fadell’s Future Shape. Previous rounds were led by Menlo Ventures and Playground Global.
RightHand Robotics intends to use the funds to accelerate product and business development, while scaling its global presence and partner network. The company will also expand its offices and invest in talent acquisition to support overall growth plans.
RightPick™ AI: It Only Looks Simple
RightHand Robotics raises $19M for robotic piece-picking
The new funding will likely be used to help scale RightHand’s business. In April 2021, RightHand introduced its RightPick 3 item-handling robot. Designed from the ground up, RightPick 3 features a modular, industrialized hardware design, software APIs and international compliance. The system is designed to be used in a variety of applications, including AS/RS, sorter induction, auto-bagger, kitting and more.
Giving robots better moves
At the core of the RightHand Robotics solution is the idea of using machine vision and intelligent grippers to make piece-picking robots more adaptable. The combination also limits the amount of training needed to run the robots, equipping each machine with what the company equates to hand-eye coordination.
RightHand Robotics also utilizes an end-of-arm tool that combines suction with novel underactuated fingers, which Odhner says gives the robots more flexibility than robots relying solely on suction cups or simple pinching grippers. “Sometimes it actually helps you to have passive degrees of freedom in your hand, passive motions that it can make and can’t actively control,” Odhner says of the robots. “Very often those simplify the control task. They take problems from being heavily over-constrained and make them tractable to run through a motion planning algorithm.”
The data the robots collect are also used to improve reliability over time and shed light on warehouse operations for customers.
RightHand Robotics video case study: Apologistics GmbH
RightHand Robotics raises $23 million from Menlo Ventures, Google
With its reinforced bank account, Somerville, Mass.-based RightHand plans to expand its business and technical teams and broaden its suite of product applications, the firm said. “The funds will be used to support our growth and in hiring people as fast as we effectively can,” Martinelli said. “We’re getting follow-on orders and we need to support those orders and extend the product line, both for projects in the U.S. and in Europe and Japan.”