Miniaturised Robotic systems for holistic in-situ Repair and maintenance works in restrained and hazardous environments

MiRoR aims to develop a fundamentally novel concept of a Miniaturised Robotic Machine (Mini-RoboMach) system, that equipped with intelligence-driven and autonomous abilities, will be demonstrated for holistic in-situ repair and maintenance of large and/or intricate installations. This will be done via the following research steps: - Develop a novel concept of Mini-RoboMach, with unique complementary miniature systems: (1) Novel free-leg hexapod (i.e. without base platform) for providing both walking and 6-axis processing capability; (2) An original stiffness-controlled flexible-arm robot for enabling snaking and 6-axis light processing ability. The complementarily means by which a hybrid configuration of Mini-RoboMach, i.e. walk & snake-in can be utilised. - Develop MiRoR intelligent controller equipped with following key abilities: (1) Self-positioning: enable walk and/or snake navigations to/from work and calibration of end-effectors on required features: (2) Reasoning: decide on methods of accessing the working area (walking and/or snaking-in mode) while learning from these experiences. (3) Planning: schedule task successions and optimise Mini-RoboMach path in reference to intervention on different places within the installation. (4) Adaptation: modify the parameters of treatment procedures for developing a self-protection ability of Mini-RoboMach in case it encounters harmful/unfavourable conditions. - Develop a unique virtual test bench for the hardware (e.g. Mini-RoboMach) and software (intelligent controller) of MiRoR so that its robustness and capability to work unsupervised within required harsh/remote workspaces can pre-assessed and corrected before its effective utilisation. - Demonstrate MiRoR by performing in-situ holistic repair/maintenance works (e.g. inspection and processing material deposition, removal) on high investment, large and/or intricate industrial such as (power plants, aero-engines, construction / infrastructure, offshore platforms, etc).
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Start date: 01-02-2012
End date: 31-01-2016
Total budget - Public funding: 5 038 220,00 Euro - 3 399 998,00 Euro
Call topic: Robots for automation of post-production and other auxiliary processes (FoF.NMP.2011-3)