Via Peri: https://www.peri.com.pl/aktualnosci.html
Exoskeletons, which until now many might mainly know from science fiction films, help employees at the Logistics Centre in Kąty Wrocławskie. They protect them from fatigue and potential damage to the muscles and spine and, consequently, from injuries caused by excessive strain. They provide mechanical support when lifting and carrying heavy objects.
“We have decided to implement exoskeletons. This is not being done to make employees work more, but to ensure they remain healthy and comfortable at work. Exoskeletons not only directly facilitate work, but have a positive impact on the health of our employees” explains Arnold Ludziejewski, manager of the Logistics Centre in Kąty Wrocławskie.
PERI Poland uses the Cray X power suit by the German company, German Bionic. The Cray X model is the world’s first device of this kind to use the capabilities of artificial intelligence, adapting to the user’s working style. This model received the Best of Innovation award in the Wearable Technologies category at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2023.
The exoskeleton has three modes of operation. It:
- Assists in lifting objects, compensating about 30 kg of weight, making lifting very easy
- Keeps the body in a certain position, e.g. when leaning over or down, almost completely relieving strain on the spine – this is especially helpful when sorting accessories or cleaning concrete slabs
- Assists with moving when objects need to be carried, in active walking assistance mode
The device also allows the power of the assistance to be set individually in each of the available modes. Importantly, the Cray X model is suitable for wet and dusty working environments.
The exoskeleton is worn like a backpack. Since the device remembers the working style of its operators, one can be used by several workers, for example on different shifts. The exoskeletons in Kąty Wrocławskie have been deployed in the material return zone. The tasks of the employees in this zone include assessing the condition of and handling items, such as supports and girders, or sorting accessories associated with frequent bending. Mobile exoskeletons are therefore very helpful there.
PERI Poland is also actively looking for other, non-mobile solutions to relieve the strain on employees. With vacuum manipulators, they can move large sheets of plywood by controlling the equipment with radio transmitters. The company is also currently testing magnetic manipulators that allow the handling of metal supports or formwork frames.
As the available studies show, such solutions have a positive impact on the health of workers, significantly reducing the risk of injury. As a result, absenteeism decreases while motivation and satisfaction increase, and consequently productivity and loyalty as well.