Flippy the robot begins its first lunch service at CaliBurger in Pasadena. Developers say it will improve because AI allows it to learn on the job. pic.twitter.com/IcnPSSYQ1n— mollenbeck (@amollenbeckKFI) March 5, 2018
Eating a burger has never been more high-tech.
A California fast food franchise has debuted its new employee - a burger-flipping robot named "Flippy" who has taken up a position as a grill cook at CaliBurger's Pasadena, California restaurant.
The robot, developed by Miso Robotics, isn't quite ready to man the grill alone just yet. Flippy still requires help from a human co-worker who has to stand by and place the raw meat on the grill for the automated cook.
Flippy then monitors the cooking beef using thermal imaging and camera vision in order to detect the temperature of the patty, the size of the patty and the temp of the grill surface. All that information is combined by the robot to create the perfect patty, every time.
No breaks for Flippy. It switches spatulas touching raw and cooked burgers. pic.twitter.com/lgvuVbKNp0— mollenbeck (@amollenbeckKFI) March 5, 2018
In a press release, Miso Robotics co-founder and CEO David Zito said his team's work on Flippy is just getting started.
"Our mission is to improve working conditions of chefs and line cooks with assistants, not replace them. Zito wrote. "Anyone who’s ever worked in a restaurant knows how hard the work is and the value of extra hands and that’s exactly what we built.”
Flippy is capable of cooking up to 150 burgers per hour, far more efficient than any human.
This isn't some dumb device cooking your dinner either. The robot uses artificial intelligence to learn how to better cook the burger each time it's working the grill. That means, the more the robot cooks, the better it gets.
Since Flippy can't flip out and suddenly quit, CaliBurger's chairman John Miller, says the robot will be a big help in cutting down on turnover and overall costs of running a franchise.
“The deployment of Flippy in CaliBurger restaurants represents a major milestone in helping our staff produce mouthwatering burgers more consistently and in a timely manner." Miller said. "The ease of integration into our existing kitchen lines will also allow us to quickly install Flippy in more locations nationwide.”
CaliBurger says they plan on deploying more Flippy robots at its other locations soon.