Urban robots: a new generation of robots

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robotics

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by Institut de Robòtica i Informàtica Industrial (IRI)
October 2009

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This is not science fiction. A few years from now, a new generation of urban robots may be taking over our streets.

 

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The Institute of Robotics and Industrial Informatics (IRI)Open in a new window is coordinating the European Project URUS (Ubiquitous Networking Robotics in Urban Settings), the aim of which is to design a network of cooperative robots that can supply services in urban areas.

The project is at an advanced stage (two experiments were carried out in 2009, one at the UPC and the other on the Rius i Taulet square in Barcelona) and various robots have been built, including Tibi and its partner Dabo, who can be seen wandering around the Barcelona Robot Lab, a robotised 10,000-m2 area on the North Campus, where the experiments on cooperation between robots and people are carried out. Tibi and Dabo are equipped with sensors that enable them to move autonomously through the city, as well as safety systems that allow them to avoid obstacles, including people. They are also able to communicate with people and answer questions using a microphone, a speaker and a touchscreen. The project is carried out in the framework of the UPC’s Artificial Vision and Intelligent Systems Research Group (VIS).