This vehicle has been equipped with a powerful sensor suite as part of our partnership with Jaguar Land Rover. The flexibility of this platform means that the Range Rover is both our primary urban data collection platform, as a successor to our Nissan LEAF RobotCar, as well as an extremely capable off-road survey vehicle.
Betty The Robot
Betty is a MetraLabs SCITOS A5 robot, designed for indoor service operations. The A5 can perform up to 12 hours of autonomous operation before automatically docking and recharging. Autonomy software for the A5 was developed during the EU STRANDS project which saw Betty and similar robots autonomously perform service roles in offices and care homes for months at time.
ANYmal is a quadruped robot developed by ANYbotics, a spin-out from ETH Zurich. It’s a cutting edge, field-ready walking robot. It’s 4 legs are each made up of three identical motors (ANYdrives), which are electrically actuated and can sense force. This gives the robot the ability to walk compliantly – adjusting its gait as it moves. It also contains a variety of depth cameras and a LIDAR to build up a model of its environment as it goes.
In the past we have had great success with driverless cars – self-driving vehicles equipped with ORI-developed autonomy software were tested successfully in public for the first time in the UK. In this project, however, we wanted to push forward autonomy to unlock its potential and test full L5 autonomy not just for driverless cars. We wanted a rugged platform which is robust to all weather conditions, could drive in places we have not typically seen robots drive before, and which could operate for many hours with minimal expert supervision.
We are not condemned to a future of congestion, accidents and time wasting. We will eventually have cars that can drive themselves, interacting safely with other road users and using roads efficiently, thus freeing up our precious time. But to do this the machines need life-long infrastructure-free navigation, and that, alongside autonomous perception, is a real focus of our work.
The Panda Arm was developed by Franka Emika, a german company founded in 2016 who specialise in making collaborative robots such as the Panda Arm.
Our Panda arm is used widely by A2I and SRL. This state-of-the-art device allows us to research manipulation tasks that were previously not possible.
The hope is that this research will enable next-generation collaborative robots to intelligently aid humans in a range of environments, from car factories to care-homes.