Segway Robotics Contributes to Robots Becoming Army Squad Members

RMP 440X

The article “U.S. Army foresees robots becoming squad members – Autonomous, bomb-sensing vehicles and personal robotic assistants could transform teams of soldiers written by Sharon Gaudin appeared in Computerworld’s July 25, 2013 issue. To follow is an excerpt.

 

 

"We’re looking at the vehicle being able to decide when to assume responsibility," said Greg Hudas, the Army’s chief engineer for ground vehicle robots. "We’re looking into the problem of the machine understanding the consciousness of humans. Are they drowsy or are they so intent on another task that if they take control of the vehicle, will it be dangerous? The interaction needs to be tightly coupled between the human and the machine."

To get some of the "smarts" into the robots, the Army is working with 5D Robotics Inc., a robotics software company, which in turn is working with DRS Technologies and Segway Inc. 5D said it is trying to integrate human behaviors into robots, such as robotic assistants that carry soldier’s packs or small wheeled robots the size of a big shoe box that can carry cameras into dangerous areas.

Jackie Fenn, an analyst with Gartner Inc. said, "I do like that notion of the robotic assistant. What work you can offload to robots is a very promising angle. But trust is critical. You really get that by having it work. When humans see that there are things they wouldn’t be able to do without a robot, that’s when the real change in thinking happens. If you can send a robot in to check out a building and keep a soldier back and safe, then that really adds value."

5D Robotice   DRS

To learn more, please view the original article in its entirety here. To review additional and related coverage, please click here.

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Segway’s RMP440 LE Works with 5D Robotics’ Software to Lighten a Soldier’s Load

A recent collaboration between Rapid Equipping Force and the Maneuver Support Center of Excellence brought together solutions from  Segway RoboticsDRS Technologies and 5D Robotics to perform a comprehensive ‘lighten a soldier’s load’ evaluation at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri. The robot’s mission was to follow and keep up with a squad while transporting a heavy payload and navigating a lengthy distance of varied terrain.

The assessment tested the Segway® RMP (Robotics Mobility Platform) 440 LE’s ability to carry 200 pounds of critical equipment including soldiers’ packs, sandbags, food and water and the ability of 5D Robotics’ Behavior Engine™ software to direct the platform.

Segway’s RMP440 LE

Segway’s RMP440 LE is a rugged, all-terrain, four-wheel drive mobility platform. Its design empowers developers to easily integrate their own equipment on top of the platform and build a customized application to meet specific needs. Click here to download a spec sheet.

5D’s Behavior Engine or “Follow Me” Technology

5D’s “follow me” technology acknowledges that like humans, robots need assistance to find their way. Once a human empowers a robot, they are capable of executing a multitude of tasks reliably and effectively.

5D’s solution emphasizes rapid, reactive, biologically inspired behavioral responses as opposed to the GPS, mapping, planning and continuous communication relied on by competitive solutions. It uses an innovative intelligent tag approach to guide interaction between robots and humans as well as between robots and other vehicles or objects.

5D’s Safety Commitment

1. Robot motion should be fast, responsive and graceful

2. Robot motion should be predictable and reliable to engender trust

3. Robots should never touch the human body unless explicitly told to do so

The AssessmentRMP440

The Segway RMP440 LE was fully loaded with equipment and included a generator that could be used to charge soldiers’ equipment. Over the course of 9 hours, the robot successfully followed the squad as well as traversed 16 miles of varied terrain without additional fuel or battery power. In fact, the robot maintained 33% of its generator fuel and 50% of its battery life.

The Evaluation

Soldier evaluations noted that the robot kept up with the patrol throughout the mission, was easy to understand and natural to use. Soldiers also valued the robot’s ability to carry a considerable amount of heavy gear.

Read Complete Coverage

Please click here to download a PDF of the article Keep on Running – 5D Robotics Tests Endurance Through Human-Robot Interaction Military Tests from 5D Robotics’ website.

Editorial Note

DRS Technologies’ Adaptive Mission Payload (AMP) kit and systems integration with the Segway RMP440 LE was originally tested at Fort Benning during the JIEDDO’s Endurance Challenge in June 2012. Click here  to view the blog post Adaptive Mission Payload Solution Wins Second Pace in JIDDEO’s Endurance Challenge.

See the RMP440 LE in Action

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Stay connected with Segway Robotics by checking out the the RMP Customer Forum, visiting the Segway Robotics website to sign up for our newsletter and RSS feed or following us on Twitter.

Contact Us

If you are interested in learning more about the RMP440 LE or 5D Robotics Technology, contact us today.

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Segway Announces Its Newest RMP — ARTI

Intro

ARTI is Segway’s latest Robotics Mobility Platform (RMP) prototype. Its name (an abbreviation of the word ‘articulate’) was derived from the platform’s articulated steering method. ARTI is based on the same core propulsion and interface hardware that is standard in the rest of the RMP line, but was further developed by Segway’s engineers to become a functional prototype with exceptional capabilities.

Overview

The ARTI platform utilizes a two degree of freedom joint to permit roll and yaw rotation. This flexibility enables the platform to traverse aggressive terrain while continually maintaining four points of contact with the ground. It is the first Segway RMP platform that does not have the ability to turn in place. However, it does feature a 4.5 foot turning radius, which enables it to turn around in an area smaller than one lane of a standard road.

Capabilities

ARTI’s articulated steering enables it to carry heavier payloads over more aggressive terrain as compared to our similar sized skid-steer platforms. In fact, payload is now limited only by the structural load limits of the gearboxes, wheels and tires instead to being dictated by the torque required to overcome the friction forces associated with skid-steering. ARTI is capable of quietly traveling longer distances with more payload than any other four wheel platform Segway has ever developed.

Features

The platform leverages the latest RMP Central Controller Architecture, which allows simple and intuitive communication with the platform over Ethernet, CAN or USB. Users can set a variety of performance parameters including acceleration and deceleration rate limits as well as turning radius. An optional integrated auxiliary power module provides DC power for task specific sensors, radios and other equipment and payload items. ARTI’s batteries can be fully charged in less than 3 hours via Segway’s new RMP external fast charger.

Availability

Segway is currently taking orders for ARTI platforms. It is important to note that ARTI is a prototype and does not yet have the level of finish that our production released commercial models do. However, if customer demand warrants it — and we expect that it may — this prototype will likely become part of our standard RMP product line.

Would you like to stay connected with Segway Robotics? You can — by checking out the RMP Customer Forum, visiting Segway Robotics to sign up for our newsletter and RSS feed or following us on Twitter.

 

Watch ARTI in Action!

Video

Video

Video

 

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Manu Systems AG® To Resell Segway® Inc.’s Robotics Mobility Platforms (RMPs) in Europe

Logo Manu Systems

Segway Inc. recently brought on Manu Systems AG, located in Regensburg Germany, as a European reseller of its Robotics Mobility Platforms (RMPs).  Manu Systems AG is well known as one the region’s leading value-added resellers of robotic hand systems, humanoid robots and other robotics mobility systems.

“We are pleased to be working with Segway. Our mission is to provide a one-stop shopping experience for service robotics researchers,” said Marco Reichel, Chairman of the Management Board, Manu Systems. “Our offering of Segway’s RMPs has been very well received by the European research market.”

Manu Systems AG currently offers Segway’s RMP 50 Omni and 50 XL, RMP 200 and 200 ATV, RMP 400, 400 Omni and RMP 440. For more information on these platforms, please visit Manu Systems AG’s website or contact the company by phone: +49 941 9459 280 or e-mail.

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Segway Robotic Platforms Demonstrated at Quantico

Sharpshooters from 100 yards out

Sharpshooters from 100 yards out

Marathon Targets (http://www.marathon-targets.com/) successfully demonstrated their smart target system during a live fire demonstration at Quantico Marine Base. Marathon’s systems are developed on both the Segway RMP200 and RMP400. To view a short video of the demonstration, click here.

For more information on the full line of Segway’s robotic platforms, please visit http://rmp.segway.com/.

Marathon Targets developed on RMP200

Marathon Targets developed on Segway RMP200

Marathon Targets developed on Segway RMP400

Marathon Targets developed on Segway RMP400

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RMP 400s on Display at FPED VIII

The Segway RMP 400‘s capabilities of being a true multi-payload, open interface and robust UGV are on display at FPED VIII, the eighth Force Protection Equipment Demonstration at the Stafford Regional Airport in Stafford, Virginia. Vendors Burchfield Automation, Air Force Research Lab and Technical Support Working Group each are demonstrating the RMP 400. If attending FPED VIII, please stop by these vendor’s booth for an up close look at the RMP 400‘s capabilities.

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Segway Robotic Mobile Platform 400: Our Most Powerful Unmanned Ground Vehicle

The Segway RMP 400 is our most powerful mobile robot platform. Powered by four lithium-ion battery packs and rolling on four ATV tires, the Segway RMP 400 is a mobile workhorse capable of carrying up to 400 lbs for long distances, over challenging terrain.

All Segway unmanned ground vehicles are designed for easy integration by scientists and engineers and are the ideal starting point for applications including research and development, industrial automation, security, and defense.

For more information or to request a quote, click here.

These images were taken during the 2010 Robotics Rodeo at Ft. Benning.

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Segway mobile robot platform demonstration video

Check out this video showing Segway’s RMP line of mobile robot platforms including 2WD balancing robots and all-terrain 4WD UGVs. Segway’s patented propulsion system technologies provide unmatched power and reliability to propel mobile robots.

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