White Castle's burger-flipping robot, Flippy, is getting an upgrade. See how it works.
Mary MeisenzahlNov 2, 2021, 15:34 IST
White Castle's robot cook, Flippy, is getting an update with Flippy 2 from Miso Robotics.
White Castle first announced a pilot program with Flippy in July 2020.
The original model could place baskets in the fryer, shake baskets in oil, and monitor for appropriate cooking time to make chicken tenders and tater tots.
Flippy works by moving back and forth in the kitchen while attached to an overhead rail.
Flippy can take over some of the more dangerous kitchen tasks, like deep frying, behind a safety shield to protect staff from hot oil.
Flippy 2 takes up even less space in the kitchen than the original, with 56% less intrusion into aisles, and a 13% height reduction.
Flippy 2 also "increases production exponentially with its new basket filling, emptying and returning capabilities," Miso Robotics CEO Mike Bell said in a statement.
Flippy 2 manages the fryer station, allowing back-of-house fast-food workers to focus on other tasks.
It also has a new bin system for frying lower volume items like onion rings, chicken fingers, or even vegetables and other dishes.
Flippy uses AI to identify the food in the bin, pick it up, distribute it in the fryer, and move into the holding area after cooking.
Flippy handling the transfers itself reduces potential injuries from hot oil that can happen when workers have to lift and move baskets.
This allows allows less interaction between people and food, also reducing potential contaminations.
Miso says that the robot can fry up to 60 additional baskets per hour over the previous model thanks to these new efficiencies.
Flippy is also customizable, with more than 120 different configurations depending on a specific restaurant's needs.
Miso also just released Flippy Wings, which makes chicken wings using the same process.
Buffalo Wild Wings started testing Flippy Wings this fall.
White Castle and Flippy are part of a recent wave of AI and automation coming to fast food.
McDonald's is working with IBM to automate drive-thru orders, and Agot AI is pitching its services using computer vision to monitor fast food workers.