Automatic Guided Vehicles (AGVs) or Driverless, Automatic Guided Industrial
Vehicles, as they are officially labeled by the American National Standards Institute
(ANSI) have long been recognized as a successful solution to automatically move
material to, from, and through manufacturing facilities, warehouses, distribution
centers, and everywhere in-between. AGVs have been accomplishing this for over
half a century. One of the most apparent values of AGVs is that they replace nonvalue-
added repetitive material movement.
AGVs have been known by an alphabet soup of names, and companies have tried
to standout in the crowd with their own branding of AGV. Some examples include
LGV (laser guided vehicle), SGV (self-guided vehicle), AGC (automatic guided cart),
or even E’GV (Egemin guided vehicle). These brandings generally are a subset
of the whole of what AGVs are. Think of a classroom being a subset of a whole
school, and likewise an LGV is a subset of AGVs, being that they only use laser
guidance for navigation.
Over the past few years, a new name began appearing: AMR (Autonomous
Mobile Robot). As the new kid on the block, AMRs have received a lot of attention,
claiming to be the next great thing in automatic, driverless mobile vehicles/robots
(but not AGVs).
The reality is that AMRs, like AGCs and SGVs, are a subset of AGVs focused on a
specific navigation technology, physical size/payload capabilities, environment, and
routing abilities. Misinformation about AMRs paints a picture of AGVs as antiquated
technology and thus obsolete. This myth is built on the selective omission of the
leaps in AGV technology in the last 10 years, such as vision-based guidance,
dynamic routing, and 3-D sensors (to name just a few).
This white paper dispels the myths that claim AMRs to be superior to AGVs.
Read the entire white paper