Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Is that a robot in your suitcase?

Date:
November 9, 2011
Source:
Queensland University of Technology
Summary:
A flying robot as small as a dinner plate that can zoom to hard-to-reach places and a fleet of eco-friendly robotic farm-hands are just two of the exciting projects a robotics team in Australia is working on.

Professor Peter Corke.
Credit: Image courtesy of Queensland University of Technology

A flying robot as small as a dinner plate that can zoom to hard-to-reach places and a fleet of eco-friendly robotic farm-hands are just two of the exciting projects the robotics team at the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) is working on.

Related Articles


The pint-sized propellor-powered robots can be packed away into a suitcase. They have multiple cameras which enable them to 'see' the world around them as they navigate their way through buildings, carrying out tasks like deliveries or inspections.

"You'll be able to put your suitcase on the ground, open it up and send the flying robot off to do its job," said Professor Peter Corke, from the Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering.

"These robots could fly around and deliver objects to people inside buildings and inspect things that are too high or difficult for a human to reach easily.

"Instead of having to lower someone down on a rope to a window on the seventh floor, or raise them up on a cherrypicker, you could send up the flying robot instead."

The QUT researchers are using cost-effective technology so the robots are affordable. Within the next year, it may be possible to attach arms to the device so it can also fix things.

Professor Corke said his team were busy working out the technical challenges.

"We need to keep it safe when it's up near solid things like power poles, or the edge of a building. It also needs to be able to keep its position when the wind is blowing," he said.

Professor Corke and his team, including fellow researcher Dr Ben Upcroft, are also researching ways to create lightweight agricultural robots, equipped with cameras, that have advanced navigation capability, cooperate in teams to cover large areas and resupply themselves -- all while causing less soil damage and applying herbicide more intelligently.

"Farmers are currently using machines which indiscriminately spray herbicide across the crop, which is expensive and not very environmentally friendly," Dr Upcroft said.

"The (robot's) camera can look at the area surrounding the robot and the image recognition software will pick out features of the weed which make it different to the rest of the crop."

The three-year project, which was recently awarded nearly $400,000 in funding from the Australian Research Council, is being conducted with the University of Sydney and Queensland farmer Andrew Bate, who runs Advanced Agricultural Systems.

Andrew Bate, who has a grain and cattle farm at Bendee, south-west of Emerald in central Queensland, said the automation of agriculture was a new frontier.

"We've already reached peak farmland, so we have to figure out smarter farming systems which increase yield in a more cost-effective and environmentally sustainable way," Mr Bate said.

"Every other industry is already enjoying the benefits of robotics. This is the revolution farming has to have."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Queensland University of Technology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Queensland University of Technology. "Is that a robot in your suitcase?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 November 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/11/111102093053.htm>.
Queensland University of Technology. (2011, November 9). Is that a robot in your suitcase?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/11/111102093053.htm
Queensland University of Technology. "Is that a robot in your suitcase?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/11/111102093053.htm (accessed December 18, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Computers & Math News

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Navy Unveils Robot Fish

Navy Unveils Robot Fish

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Dec. 18, 2014) The U.S. Navy unveils an underwater device that mimics the movement of a fish. Tara Cleary reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
How 2014 Shaped The Future Of The Internet

How 2014 Shaped The Future Of The Internet

Newsy (Dec. 18, 2014) It has been a long, busy year for Net Neutrality. The stage is set for an expected landmark FCC decision sometime in 2015. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Amazon Offering One-Hour Delivery Through Prime Now

Amazon Offering One-Hour Delivery Through Prime Now

Newsy (Dec. 18, 2014) Amazon is now offering one-hour delivery to Amazon Prime members in Manhattan and hopes to expand to other cities soon. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jaguar Unveils 360 Virtual Windshield Making Car Pillars Appear Transparent

Jaguar Unveils 360 Virtual Windshield Making Car Pillars Appear Transparent

Buzz60 (Dec. 17, 2014) Jaguar unveils a virtual 360 degree windshield that may be the most futuristic automotive development yet. Jen Markham explains. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins