When it is time to begin waste collection, the driver of the refuse truck presses a button. This starts the robot, and the drone simultaneously lifts from the roof of the truck. Flying through alleyways, the drone quickly finds the location of the refuse bins and communicates their positions to the robot. This is followed by automatic waste collection and emptying by the robot. In the cab, the driver is able to monitor the exact location of the robot and the emptying process.
The ROAR project, Robot-based Autonomous Refuse handling, is a collaboration between the Volvo Group, Chalmers University of Technology, Mälardalen University, Penn State University in the United States, and Renova.
Two Tucson-area men, along with a robotic device made in the Tucson area that specialize in water rescues, are working with Greek officials to try to reduce the number of drownings of fleeing refugees off the country’s coast.
The robotic devices — known as EMILY — are manufactured at Hydronalix, a company in Sahuarita. EMILY stands for Emergency Integrated Lifesaving Lanyard.
One of my neighbors is on a team at the Super-Regionals in San Antonio, TX this week. While we marvel at the Atlas humanoid robot, it is even more impressive to see high school students with their limited budgets and time, push the boundaries of robotic imagination. The video below shows the sophistication of the competition – starting around 2:35.
The 2015-2016 game, FIRST® RES-QSM, is modeled after rescue situations faced by mountain explorers all over the globe. Played by two Alliances of two robots each, robots will score points by: “resetting” Rescue beacons; delivering Rescue Climbers to a shelter; parking on the mountain; and parking in the Rescue beacon repair zone or floor goal.
Robots may also score points by retrieving debris from the playing field and placing them in mountain or floor goals, and also by hanging from a pull-up bar during the last 30-seconds of a match.
While the Atlas robot may not boost the quarterly earnings of Google parent Alphabet for a while, it appears to be the next step for robotics, according to Max Wolff, chief economist at Manhattan Venture Partners.
"My guess is early on we're going to see defense use, law enforcement use, hazardous waste use and some surgical and medical equipment use," Wolff said on CNBC's Tech Bet.
The robo-advisers have quickly attracted a growing number of investors. They have also caught the attention of established financial players. Digitally driven investment providers were estimated to hold $53 billion at the end of 2015, according to the Aite Group.
With few exceptions, these services share the same widely established investing philosophies: Create a low-cost diversified portfolio for the long run; don’t ever — ever! — time the market; and focus on meeting goals, be it for retirement, a down payment or college.
The cameras also help the bots figure out where they’ve been—a seemingly simple enhancement that makes a host of new skills possible. For example, some robot vacuums—like the ones from iRobot and Samsung below—can now clean half your home, return to their bases to recharge their batteries and then pick up where they left off without traversing the same area again. This allows designers to crank up the suction power, since conserving battery life is no longer a concern. The bots can simply recharge as many times as needed to get a job done.
For the first time, we’re also seeing robots that can connect to the Internet, allowing you to activate them using a smartphone app from another floor in your home or from across the country. Don’t have time to vacuum before a last-minute guest comes over? No worries. Just turn on your robo housekeeper from the grocery store.
In stepped companies such as year-old Fetch in San Jose and six-year-old Harvest Automation in Billerica, Mass. Both say their robots can keep up with a briskly walking person for about eight hours on a fully charged battery. Fetch says its basic models can carry as much as 150 pounds; Harvest, 50.
Tim Barrett, the chief operating officer of shipping company Barrett Distribution Centers, says that with eight Harvest prototypes moving goods around its Massachusetts warehouse, the company didn’t need to install a pricey conveyor belt.
Makers of semiconductors spend upward of $5 billion to build and operate fabrication plants—known as “fabs”—that run 24 hours a day so they can recoup their investment before the equipment becomes obsolete in five years or so. Rows of pristine machines sit in windowless cleanrooms, which are almost as free of humans as they are of dust. Intel and Texas Instruments have spent decades perfecting this almost sci-fi form of manufacturing. Now they want to show the rest of the world how it’s done.
The chipmakers have set their sights on what researcher IHS estimates is a $185 billion global market for gear to automate industrial production. To capture a portion of that spending, they’re prodding companies to bring the Internet of Things—a term that describes a world in which physical objects are embedded with electronics and talk to each other—into factories. “It’s moving beyond hype and into engineers rolling up their sleeves,” says Doug Davis, senior vice president of the IoT division at Intel, which had more than $2 billion in sales last year. “The economic value and impact are unquestioned.”
ProGlove, developed by Workaround, is an “intelligent” glove that uses chips to power a simple display on the wrist. If the person wearing the glove completes an assembly task correctly, a large green check mark appears.
“The program creates music in four main steps. First it learns from a corpus of existing compositions. Then it generates an abstract musical structure. Next it populates this structure with chords. Finally, it massages the structure and notes into a specific musical framework. In just a few seconds, out pops a musical piece that nobody has ever heard before. The result of this top-down approach is that Kulitta becomes discerning, throwing out musical elements it thinks do not help the composition.”
Future shipping ports won’t need acres and acres of land to transfer and hold containers unloaded from ships. Instead, robotic carts and elevators will efficiently shuttle containers around multistory structures and deliver them to tractor-trailers that pull in below.
That’s the idea behind the Robotic Container Management & Storage System being proposed by Israel Aerospace Industries. The whole thing would be managed by an autonomous control system overseen by human operators.
IAI says the system can load and unload containers 1.5 times faster than currently possible while reducing space needed for operations by half.