Listen to this article
WiBotic, a Seattle-based company developing wireless charging and power optimization solutions for robots, is partnering with Nabtesco Corporation. Nabtesco, a leading Japanese engineering company that specializes in gearboxes, rotors, motors and robotics, is now selling WiBotic’s wireless charging solutions in Japan.
WiBotic systems provide mobile robots with greater range, flexibility and reliability than contact-based charging systems. They also require less human intervention and maintenance. Power delivery is flexible to within several centimeters of WiBotic’s wireless transmitter to help robots recharge and improve overall uptime.
WiBotic said there has been “rapid growth” in the Japanese wireless charging sector. The company said it expects unit sales to more than triple in the next four years. Japan, which is responsible for 40% of robot sales worldwide, just held its iREX event in Tokyo. The show had 654 exhibitors demoing different robotics technologies. Here are our 6 robotics trends from iREX.
“Japan is home to many of the world’s leading robotics companies and manufacturers, and Nabtesco is a true pioneer within the industry,” said Ben Waters, co-founder and CEO, WiBotic. “The Japanese market for wireless power solutions is positioned for rapid growth, and to meet demand, Nabtesco has been looking for a strategic partner to deliver innovative solutions. We’re thrilled they’ve selected us, and we look forward to working with them closely in the future.”
Earlier in 2023, WiBotic introduced PowerPad Pro, a stand-alone platform that automatically charges drones without physical connection points, while wirelessly transferring flight data, images and video.
WiBotic also won a 2023 RBR50 Robotics Innovation Award for its wireless charging technology. It made the wireless charging and controls communication available for Automated Storage and Retrieval Systems (ASRS). Because of their slow charging speed, batteries might not be practical for storing power in an ASRS, and the usual solution, super-capacitors, requires direct contact with electrical plates to charge. Instead, WiBotic uses a wireless power system that can also allow data to be sent between the charging station and shuttle over the wireless power system’s existing control radios.