Portal:Robotics

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The Robotics Portal

Honda ASIMO Walking Stairs.JPG

Robotics is the science and technology of robots, including their design, manufacture, and application. Robotics requires a working knowledge of electronics, mechanics, and software. A person working in the field is a roboticist. The word robot was introduced by Czech writer Karel Čapek in his play R.U.R. (Rossum's Universal Robots) (1920), while the word robotics was first used in print by Isaac Asimov, in his science fiction short story "Runaround" (1941).

A robot is an electro-mechanical or bio-mechanical device that can perform autonomous or preprogrammed tasks. Robots may be used to perform tasks that are too dangerous or difficult for humans, such as radioactive waste clean-up, or may be used to automate mindless repetitive tasks that should be performed with more precision by a robot than by a human, such as automobile production.

Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover.jpg

The word robot is used to refer to a wide range of machines, the common feature of which is that they are all capable of movement and can be used to perform physical tasks. Robots take on many different forms, ranging from humanoid, which mimic the human form and way of moving, to industrial, whose appearance is dictated by the function they are to perform. Robots can be grouped generally as mobile robots (e.g. autonomous vehicles), manipulator robots (e.g. industrial robots) and self reconfigurable robots, which can conform themselves to the task at hand. Robots may be controlled directly by a human, such as remotely-controlled bomb-disposal robots and robotic arms; or may act according to their own decision making ability, provided by artificial intelligence. However, the majority of robots fall in between these extremes, being controlled by pre-programmed computers.

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RQ-4 Global Hawk.jpg

The Northrop Grumman RQ-4 Global Hawk is an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) used by the US Air Force as a surveillance aircraft. In role and design, it is somewhat similar to the Lockheed U-2, the venerable 1950s spy plane. It is a theater commander's asset to both provide a broad overview and systematically target surveillance shortfalls. The Global Hawk air vehicle is able to provide high resolution Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR)—that can penetrate cloud-cover and sandstorms—and Electro-Optical/Infrared (EO/IR) imagery at long range with long loiter times over target areas. It can survey as much as 100,000 square kilometers (40,000 square miles) of terrain a day.

The Global Hawk is the first UAV to be certified by the FAA to file its own flight plans and use civilian air corridors in the United States with no advance notice. This potentially paves the way for a revolution in unmanned flight, including that of automatically piloted passenger airliners.

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Puma Robotic Arm - GPN-2000-001817.jpg
Credit: Dominic Hart, NASA
The Puma Robotic Sensor Arm for use in virtual reality development and studies at the NASA Ames Research Center, Mountain View, California.
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Topics

Concepts: AI - Automation - Behavior - Calibration - Control - Cybernetics - Human interaction - Kits -Locomotion - Mapping - Mechatronics - Microbotics - Nanorobotics - Neural network - Odometry - Pathfinding - Servomechanism - Software - Vision
Fields: AUVs - Androids - BEAM robotics - Biomorphics - Bionics - Cyborgs - Domestic - Gynoids - Industrial - Military - Surgical - Swarm - Sociorobotics - Telerobotics - UAVs
Robots: AIBO - ASIMO - Atlas (robot) - Boeing X-50 - KHR-1 - Lego Mindstorms - Leonardo's robot - Mars Rover - Mecha -RQ-4_Global_Hawk - MQ-1 Predator - nEUROn - QRIO - SIGMO - TOPIO - Wakamaru - X-47 Pegasus
People and organizations: Roboticists - International Federation of Robotics (IFR) - Robotics Institute - FIRST
Fiction: Bender - Bishop - Blade Runner - C-3PO - Johnny 5 - Marvin - Metropolis - R2-D2 - R.U.R. - The Matrix - The Terminator - Three Laws of Robotics - Transformers - Wall-e
Competitions, expos and trials: BattleBots - DARPA - ELROB - Botball - IARC - RoboCup - Robotica
Lists: Autobots - Robot Hall of Fame - Robotics topics - Robots from Futurama - Star Wars droids - UAVs

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Robotica winning robot Run Amok.jpg

Robotica was a robot combat show produced for the American television cable channel TLC, a subsidiary of the Discovery Channel. Three seasons of Robotica were produced. The shows first aired in April 2001, with the final season beginning in late 2002. Show hosts for the first season were Ahmet Zappa, Tanika Ray, and Tanya Memme. For the second and third seasons, Dan Danknick replaced Tanika Ray. Robotica reruns are currently showing in several European countries.

Each preliminary show in the first season of Robotica featured four robots weighing as much as 210 pounds paired off in a series of three challenges. The winners of each pairing faced each other in a Robot-sumo style "Fight to the Finish" to determine the winner of the show. Robotica seasons 2 and 3 featured redesigned challenges. The Speedway was eliminated, The Gauntlet was redesigned, and The Maze had been completely re-done and renamed The Labyrinth.

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News

August 2012

6th

  • Touchdown! 05:32 UTC, though with the delay touchdown was actually at 05:18 UTC
  • 500m, rockets working, 40m altitude, skyframe started...
  • Parachute has opened, on finals, 6.5 km height ...
  • The MSL has separated and has started its entry to Mars. UHF feed is established, and data processed from Odyssey, with 11G entry load. More ...

2nd

  • Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) begins final testing for landing Curiosity on Mars, planned for 5 August. If any trajectory corrections are necessary, these will take place later today. More ...
  • The US Navy announces that one of its MQ-8B Fire Scout helicopter UAV's has chased pirates off the Somali coast. The USS Klakring has four of the UAVs onboard, returning the series of helicopters to operational status after a " pause" following some technical issues. More ...
  • A robot that can land the right way up like a cat. The University of Pennsylvania reveal a paper on their self-righting robot. More ...

1st

  • A 13' 9000lb robot which can auto-track targets and shoot them with it's gatling guns or 6 shot launcher when the driver smiles? More ...
  • Willow Garage's Personal Robot 2 (PR2) aims to help people in various home-based tasks and is customisable for specific customers and their needs. There has been previous footage of the robot folding towels which became popular in the internet. More ...
  • The US Navy attempts to teach a robot plane, the X-47B UCAS (Unmanned Combat Air System), to take-off and land on an aircraft carrier. More ...


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