What’s New in Robotics? 05.11.2021


Information briefs for the week check out robotic COVID fighters coaching for the upcoming Beijing Olympics (100 days to go!) and one other robotic that displays Olympic water for security, then it’s off to see how cobots cope with misplaced & discovered duties, adopted by high-rise, window-cleaning robots, then how robotic laborers automate leaf pruning of tomato leaves, and robotic grape harvesters that make wine style higher (sure, style higher!).


Robots to maintain Winter Olympics secure

The Winter Video games are 100 days off. The large Wukesong Area is on the point of host the ice hockey occasions for February’s Beijing Winter Olympics 2022 (February 4 to twenty). For 16 days, over 30 robots shall be deployed to assist hold the gamers, employees, and hundreds offans secure from COVID.

Mobile robot used for disinfection at the Beijing Olympics

Shenzhen-based Kangfeng Air Purification Know-how Firm’s massive cellular air purifiers will help the Beijing Olympic Video games.

Moreover, cellular robots shall be used to sanitize the air by spraying a disinfecting fog able to treating 387 sq. toes with every spray; and carries sufficient disinfectant to cowl 10,000 sq. toes with every deployment (see video).

One other robotic named Little White, is provided with facial recognition sensors that can scan the venue for followers not carrying a masks and remind them to take action.



Robots monitor Olympics’ water provide

One in every of most essential water sources for the Beijing Olympics is Guanting Reservoir (in-built 1951), positioned about 65 miles from Beijing. With out a safe water provide, it will be unattainable to hold on the Video games’ two-week program. So early on, Hefei Institutes of Bodily Science (HFIPS) has had its unmanned floor automobile monitoring the reservoir’s water high quality.

Robot monitoring Beijing Olympics water supplyBecause the 2022 Beijing Olympic Winter Video games strategy (February 2022), it is pressing to safe the water high quality of The Guanting Reservoir, one of many water assets essential for the Video games.

“Now we have been engaged on this venture for greater than three years,” mentioned Dr. Yu Daoyang. “The present floor water monitoring system in China is principally on-line monitoring and guide sampling for laboratory evaluation.”

The brand new management expertise is exact and quick, particularly as it’s 5G enabled, and ensures fast, in-situ and on-line monitoring for the unmanned vessel, even in advanced environments.

Manufactured from high-quality stainless-steel to stop corrosion, the autonomous floor vessel is about 4 meters lengthy by 2 meters, is battery powered and may function for greater than eight hours.

“That is the biggest unmanned, water-quality monitoring floor vessel in China, ” Dr. YU defined, “with probably the most full features and superior clever software program.”

Cobot-style misplaced & discovered

Think about a choose & place cobot has simply stuffed a delivery carton with twenty-five completely different gadgets, when immediately the client logs on to the ecommerce retailer to cancel one of many gadgets. Good customer support says to get the merchandise out of the field earlier than it’s shipped to the Robotiq 2F-85 gripper used for a lost and found applicationbuyer.

Decide and place robots are generally utilized in fashionable manufacturing and warehouse environments; and, as their title implies, they choose up objects and shortly place them into packaging, delivery cartons or at different places for additional processing.

May the identical choose & place robotic return into the delivery carton and retrieve the cancelled merchandise? Probably not: choose & place is a one-way journey. Nicely, that’s, till now.

MIT researchers, utilizing a cobot arm with a digicam and radio frequency (RF) antenna connected to its gripper, have solved the issue.

The secret is the usage of cheap RFID tags ($.03 every). RFID or radio-frequency identification tags include an built-in circuit that may determine itself to an antenna and tag reader.

RFusion, because it’s referred to as by the researchers, “is a robotic system that may seek for and retrieve RFID-tagged gadgets in line-of-sight, non-line-of-sight, and fully-occluded settings. RFusion consists of a robotic arm that has a digicam and antenna strapped round its gripper.” As well as, “novel reinforcement-learning …makes use of the fused RF-visual data to effectively localize, maneuver towards, and grasp goal gadgets.”


Window cleaning robot

Excessive-rise, window-cleaning robots

Even one avoidable dying is simply too many. On common, information from the Worldwide Window Cleansing Affiliation confirmed that one high-rise window cleaner was killed yearly over the previous 4 years.

Osmo, the high-rise, window-cleaning system from Tel Aviv-based Skyline Robotics, is answering the decision to the plain want for security Window cleaning robotby way of automated window cleansing…plus, velocity and effectivity.

Ozmo, says the startup developer of the expertise, “is an automatic window-cleaning robotic that maps constructing surfaces to wash home windows of various configurations and keep away from obstacles with out human steering.” 

The system combines synthetic intelligence, machine studying, and pc imaginative and prescient with a robotic arm designed by KUKA. The robotic system makes use of power sensors to measure how fragile glass is, and “AI helps the system stay secure, even in gusty situations. The system makes use of lidar, scanning a constructing’s façade, memorizing surfaces and planning a cleansing path — which it frequently updates.”

Developments engineered by KUKA embody on-the-fly management of the KUKA robots by way of strain utilized through the cleansing course of, in addition to the flexibility to compensate for a shifting scaffolding as a result of climate and altering architectural constructing options.”

With the window-cleaning trade at $40 billion yearly and with 74% of all window cleaners within the US over the age of 40, robots seem like the up-and-coming replacements for individuals excessive up on scaffolding.

Automated leaf pruning for tomato vegetation

The world loves tomatoes. A lot so, over 180 million metric tons are harvested yearly, with China’s 33% share by far the biggest worldwide.

Automated leaf pruning for tomato plantsThough obligatory for photosynthesis, a tomato plant’s leaves burn up quite a lot of vitality that would in any other case be used for fruit manufacturing. Pruning the foliage is greatest for fruit improvement, nonetheless, it’s backbreakingly sluggish and tedious. A robotic to do the pruning can be preferrred for velocity, effectivity and optimum fruit progress for hundreds of thousands of acres…and make stoop-labor, guide choosing pointless.

Enter, Dutch firm Priva and its automated Kompano leaf-cutting robotic, which, in accordance with Priva, is “the primary robotic worldwide that gives customers with an economically viable different for de-leafing tomato crops by hand.”

Designed to de-leaf tomato vegetation solely in greenhouses, Kompano is a battery-powered robotic that may function on a 24/7 foundation. The 6-foot by 2-foot auto-pruning robotic weighs 900 lbs. and is 85% efficient at pruning 2.5 acres per week.

A sequence of fifty Kompano robots are in manufacturing (no pricing but accessible).


Robots as wine connoisseurs!

“New analysis at UC Davis is exhibiting robots may help substitute guide laborers and even change the way in which wine tastes (for the higher!).”

Robots as wine connoisseursAnd as for the price of robotic vs. guide: “We’re going from $1.20 to about 12 to 22 cents per vine.”

Wine growers, historically averse to machines harvesting their grapes, are turning to automated grape harvesting in rising numbers.

In Italy, “final 12 months was the worst labor scarcity of his half-century profession in wine. Use of harvesting machines among the many group’s members elevated 20% this 12 months in response.”

In California, with a wine trade threatened by pests, drought, and wildfires, now provides an absence of labor to the ever-growing checklist of worries.

“Our estimate is we now have two-thirds much less individuals working in wine grapes now,” mentioned Prof. Kaan Kurtural, of the UC Davis Viticulture and Enology Division.

Researchers say that the strain is on to stabilize all of the uncertainties of wine rising, and that automation and robotics and synthetic intelligence are offering that consolation zone.