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Robots Escape Factory – Fall On Grandma

from The Financial Times

Dawn of a robot revolution as army of machines escape the factory

Cleaning the Sydney Harbour Bridge used to be a dangerous, dirty and laborious job. As soon as a team of workers, operating a sandblaster, reached one end of the iconic structure they had to start again to keep 485,000 square metres of steel pristine.

Now two robots called Rosie and Sandy, built by SABRE Autonomous Solutions, blast away paint and corrosion all day long without a break. They determine which area needs most attention via a laser scan and move about on rails.

“A sand blaster can slice through flesh. Automating jobs like that is a good thing, it helps improve the quality of human work,” says Roko Tschakarow, head of the Mobile Gripper Systems Division at Schunk, which supplies the lightweight robot arm for the Sydney robots.’

However, first various ethical, legal and societal issues will need to be addressed.

“If a heavy robot falls on your grandma, without a clear legal framework, what’s going to happen?,” asks Mr Champion at Robolution.

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Posted on June 7, 2014 by Editor

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