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Monday, August 09, 2004

The Wireless Robotic Gas Worker
Assessing and repairing old gas pipes is difficult and costly, representing about $650 million per year in the U.S. alone. So robotic researchers from Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) have developed a remote-controlled, untethered, wireless prototype crawling robot, designed to inspect underground gas mains.

This robot carries the trademarked name "Explorer" (How original! There are about a thousand trademarks in the U.S. which include "explorer" in their names!) It looks like a link sausage with front- and rear-fisheye cameras and lights and is remotely controlled by an operator sitting in a truck. In a world's premiere, this robot has been successfully used to inspect gas pipes dating from 1890 in Yonkers, N.Y.

If you want to purchase one, it will cost you between $50K and $75K providing you buy at least ten units. You'll find more details, references and illustrations in this overview.
:: posted by Roland Piquepaille, 1:39 PM Comments (0)
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