Bobcat Company announced the launch of an autonomous zero-turn mower in an effort to expanding its offerings in landscaping and grounds maintenance. Simultaneously, the company is also investing in Greenzie, an autonomous software company for commercial lawn mowers and outdoor power equipment.
Bobcat on Their Autonomous Zero-turn Mower
“Innovation is part of the Bobcat DNA. We invented the compact equipment industry more than 60 years ago, and we continue to reimagine the future of the industry today. Through this investment with Greenzie, we can accelerate our development of operator-assisted and automated solutions to help our customers be more productive on the jobsite or their backyard.”Joel Honeyman, vice president of global innovation for Bobcat Company
Bobcat designed its new autonomous zero-turn mower to operate using software developed by Greenzie. It can complete repetitive mowing tasks without an onboard operator, resulting in increased efficiency and productivity. The mower has a ride-and-repeat feature, where operators can plot a course and mark areas to avoid during autonomous operations. It can also detect objects and travel its prescribed path while the operator focuses on other tasks. You can manage and even edit the route using a smartphone app.
How Greenzie Software Works
Greenzie works in a pretty straightforward manner. First, you map the perimeter with a product like the Bobcat autonomous zero-turn mower. You literally set the boundary by mowing it once manually. After that you can switch to the Autonomous setting. Now, you just press the “Mow” button and the mower continues cutting within your mapped area.
While the mower tackles the large majority of the middle work, you can take care of other tasks such as edge trimming, edging, and blowing. In the meantime, your “robotic employee” finishes the job.
Greenzie enhanced the capabilities of autonomous zero-turn mowers by building in important features that go beyond simple navigation. They included the capability for y-turns, enhanced straight-line tracking, and took into account throttle up (and down) times. Lastly, they strategically set minimal but sufficient mowing overlaps. This get the job done with less stripes than would be possible with a human operator.
Through this investment, Bobcat and Greenzie will work together to accelerate Bobcat’s development of autonomous capabilities and solutions across its product line.