In the News
Autonomous systems are on a roll, from automated guided vehicles in warehouses and self-driving cars to delivery and service robots. Better perception and software are making mobile robots useful for a widening range of applications. Thus, it’s no surprise that Mel Torrie, CEO and president of Autonomous Solutions Inc., is excited about the future.
“The outlook is incredible,” he said. “Technology has improved, and costs have dropped, coupled with a surging demand fuelled by rising minimum-wage limits. It’s all converging to bring explosive growth. It’s a very exciting time.”
Torrie and ASI’s other founders began developing robotic vehicles in 1995 at Utah State University. John Deere, the world largest manufacturer of agricultural tractors, started funding robotic tractor development at Utah State in 1998.
In 2000, the company asked Torrie to pursue productization of the technology.
“Robotic systems are very complex in that they have multiple computers, radios, sensors, GPS, and multiple people directing and monitoring parts of the operation through remote clients,” he said. “We believe that keeping it simple is a critical differentiator.”
“Our mission statement says, ‘Helping you reach your potential through innovative robotic solutions,'” said Torrie. “Our vision is to be the world’s leading partner in ground vehicle system automation.”
Automomous business units
ASI’s headquarters are located at the base of a mountain range in Northern Utah. Its robotics testing facilities are spread over 100 acres, with six continuous testing tracks.
The business is organized into seven units to provide liability isolation, investment flexibility, and maximum stability.
“Equipment manufacturers are often sued when people use their products in unsafe ways and injure themselves,” Torrie said. To avoid such scenarios that could compromise ASI and its partners’ intellectual property, it created...