Caterpillar has acquired select assets and hired employees from San Francisco, US, robot and autonomy technology company Marble Robot.
The acquisition is said to be part of Caterpillar’s automation and autonomy strategy, which the company says demonstrates its commitment to the next generation of jobsite solutions.
Building on its work in autonomous mining, Caterpillar plans to leverage the expertise of the new team to bring scalable solutions to meet the changing needs of construction, quarry, industrial and waste industries.
The new team is comprised of leading roboticists with a background in the robotics industry. Caterpillar claims it intends to leverage the team’s fully integrated on-board autonomy technology – including perception, localisation and planning – to continue delivering smart, safe, more productive and cost-effective solutions to customers.
“We’re excited to join the autonomy team at Caterpillar,” said Kevin Peterson, former Marble CEO, now Caterpillar technologist.
“In many ways, this completes a full circle for me. I had the privilege of working with Caterpillar early in my career at Carnegie Mellon, where they sponsored the development of the first generation of self-driving vehicle software. Now, with the acquisition of the Marble team, together we will drive the next generation of autonomy solutions for Caterpillar customers in the construction, quarry, industrial and waste industries.”
Caterpillar, the world’s largest construction OEM by sales, commented in the news report that the company will continue to make investments in emerging technologies, like automation, in order to bring innovative solutions to meet the industries’ challenges.
“Our customers need the best solutions for running an effective jobsite, with improved operator productivity, lower operating costs, and greater efficiency brought by autonomous solutions,” said Karl Weiss, Caterpillar chief technology officer. “That’s why we’re continuing to invest in the areas of automation, remote control and autonomy.”