DHL Express deploys ‘sorting robot’ in Asia Pacific

The DHLBot, capable of sorting over 1,000 parcels per hour with high accuracy, will be initially installed in Singapore and Korea.

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DHL Express has introduced a AI-powered (artificial intelligence) robotic arm in Asia Pacific that can automate the process parcel sortation as it looks to handle greater volumes, particularly during peak season in the region.

The DHLBot, capable of sorting over 1,000 small parcels per hour with high accuracy, will be initially be installed in Singapore and Korea. DHL expects the automated sorting arm to reduced the probability of mis-sorting and increase its operational efficiency by at least 40 percent, .

DHL Express said the entire process reduces the dependency on employees to manually read waybills and sort parcels, allowing them to have more time for route planning. State-of-the-art 3D and barcode cameras scan the airway bill on each package for its targeted destination as it travels through the conveyor belt. The AI-powered DHLBot, positioned at the end of the conveyor belt, then receives the package’s information and its destination and intelligently sorts it into respective delivery bins that sit on racks surrounding the robot, each representing a courier route.

“Sorting parcels might seem like a straightforward process but it actually takes a lot of time, effort and precision to ensure that they get to their addressees without a hitch! These innovations, however minor they seem, will really boost our employees’ and operations’ productivity and efficiency,” said Ken Lee, chief executive for Asia Pacific.

The German post and parcel group said the robotics arm solution is one of many digital transformation projects for which DHL Express is spending around 2 billion until 2025.

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