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Oxford Robotics Institute | Projects - EUROPA2

European Robotic Pedestrian Assistant 2.0

The EUROPA2 project is funded by the European Commission within FP7. The goal of the EUROPA2 project is to develop the foundations for service robots designed to autonomously navigate in urban environments to provide various services to users including guidance, delivery, and transportation.

There has been a tremendous progress in the development of autonomous robots that offer different services to their users. Typical services include the support of elderly people, cleaning, delivery tasks, autonomous driving, or surveillance. Most of the systems developed so far, however, are restricted to indoor scenarios, to non-urban outdoor environments, or to autonomous driving on roads. Furthermore, substantial efforts are required to deploy such robots in new environments.

Urban areas are highly dynamic and complex and introduce numerous challenges to autonomous robots. They require solutions to several complex problems regarding the perception of the environment, the representation of the robot’s workspace, models for the expected interaction with users to plan actions, state estimation as well as the states of all dynamic objects, the proper interpretation of the gathered information including semantic information as well as long-term operation.

The goal of the EUROPA2 project, which builds on top of the results of the successfully completed FP7 project EUROPA, is to bridge this gap and to develop the foundations for robots designed to autonomously navigate in urban environments outdoors as well as in shopping malls and shops, for example, to provide various services to humans. Based on the combination of publicly available maps and the data gathered with the robot’s sensors, it will acquire, maintain, and revise a detailed model of the environment, including semantic information, detect and track moving objects in the environment, adapt its navigation behaviour according to the current situation, and anticipate interactions with users during navigation. A central aspect in the project is life-long operation and reduced deployment efforts by avoiding to build maps with the robot before it can operate. EUROPA2 is targeted at developing novel technologies that will open new perspectives for commercial applications of service robots in the future.

For more information please visit the Europa2 Website