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Alibaba opens China’s largest robot warehouse in preparation for Singles Day

Alibaba opens the largest robot-enhanced warehouse in China to cope with demand for its wildly successful Singles Day event

Chinese tech conglomerate Alibaba has opened China’s largest automated warehouse in preparation for its lucrative Singles Day shopping event on 11 November

Operated by Alibaba’s logistics arms, Cainiao Network, the factory was opened on 25 October in Jiangsu province.

Cainiao handles Alibaba’s warehouse operations, as well as organising deliveries to customers via courier firms.

According to CNBC, Cainiao processed 800mn packages on Singles Day, which itself earned US$25bn in sales, and the warehouse’s 700 robots are set to make the process far more efficient.

In a video posted to Alibaba’s news website, Alizila, the robots can be seen moving units around the warehouse while human staff load the units with goods.

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Cainiao vice president Ben Wang told TechNode that the automated warehouse can fulfil 50% more orders in the same time frame than a traditional facility.

TechNode said that the robots utilise sophisticated IoT technology to ensure they avoid collisions with each other and select goods to transport intelligently to maximise efficiency.

According to TechNode, Wang said:

“The whole park is underpinned by Internet of Things technology, connecting people inside and outside the facility, handling vehicle guidance and the operation of equipment and monitoring systems to ensure, for example, there’s no danger of fire.”

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