Scaling Production Beyond 1000 ANYmals with Zollner

Large industrial asset operators increasingly use robotics to automate hazardous work at their facilities. This has led to soaring demand for autonomous inspection solutions like ANYmal. Series production by our partner Zollner enables ANYbotics to supply our customers with the required quantities of robots.

ANYmal automates the inspection of facilities such as offshore rigs, metal and chemical production facilities, mines, and power stations. As robotic inspection becomes a standard operating procedure, the numbers per end-user increase to several units per site across multiple facilities. ANYbotics is prepared to meet this demand escalation with its production partner Zollner.

A Close Loop between R&D and Production Guarantees Continuous Innovation

From prototypes to the first commercial series, ANYmal was produced in-house at ANYbotics to ensure an immersed loop between R&D and operation. The production process was industrialized internally and, as the number of ANYmals ordered increased, transitioned to our external partner, Zollner.

ANYmal requires an entirely customized manufacturing setup. It’s a complex, lightweight, highly performative, and ruggedized product for which only very few standard components are available. The robots are continuously developed further, with new capabilities added to the product roadmap and optimizations derived from robot telemetry data. This poses a particular challenge, as a highly scalable production process must be flexible enough for specification changes from production batch to batch.

In this next-level partnership, ANYbotics and Zollner meet on eye level, exchange know-how, and develop solutions together: Zollner specializes in flexible and scalable production, and ANYbotics in developing and selling the robot.
— René Bürkler, General Manager Switzerland at Zollner

The custom PCB serial production line in Hombrechtikon enables large volumes and flexible adjustments.

High Quality, Efficiency, and Arbitrary Scaling Thanks to Modular Design

The production with Zollner combines quality with scalability

At the facility in Hombrechtikon, Switzerland, Zollner manufactures all the necessary PCBs, pre-assembles components, and carries out the final assembly of the robots. Zollner also manages the entire purchasing process for the complex product with more than 400 components. For each new production batch, Zollner receives updated specifications and extensive handover and training.

The in-house serial PCB production in Hombrechtikon enables fully customized components in large quantities with high standardization. Each board gets quality-tested as part of the process. Nevertheless, adjustments can be implemented flexibly with each new production batch.

In robot assembly, Zollner opted for a modular setup with production islands for each step of production and component testing. Efficiency and quality are continuously optimized within the modules without changing the overall process

All processes at Zollner are designed for scaling and will allow us to deliver thousands of robots. All manufactured in Switzerland.
— Martin Bühlmann, Chief Operations Officer at ANYbotics

Modular production islands at Zollner allow production volumes of thousands of ANYmal robots.

The production processes are designed so that production can be scaled according to demand by increasing the capacity of the individual modules. As a result, ANYbotics will meet demand by supplying thousands of units, utilizing Zollner’s manufacturing capabilities in Switzerland. This strategic approach ensures efficient production and a robust response to market demand and demonstrates ANYbotics’ adaptability to meet customers’ needs through collaboration with Zollner.

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