Robots Help in Aftermath of Hurricane

Posted 30 Oct 2012 at 18:32 UTC by steve Share This

Expect to see a lot of robots helping in rescue, repair, and cleanup efforts after Hurricane Sandy. These days, even smaller organizations have access to robots. For example, Vernon, CT Emergency Management Department will be flying a Parrot AR Drone to provide live HD video feeds for damage inspection. Larger cities now have multiple emergency robots at their disposal. Consultant Mark Merritt expects power utility companies in the area will be deploying drones to speed inspection of infrastructure damage, though he notes there may be "sensitivity" about using drones due to their recent politicization. A recent New York Times article describes power utility drones such as the Aeryon Scout pictured above. No word yet on whether Robin R. Murphy or CRASAR's Roboticists Without Borders program will be sending in search and rescue robots but we'll keep you updated. While not ready in time to help with Hurricane Sandy, NASA has been prepping a pair of Global Hawk UAVs for hurricane tracking duties. The autonomous Global Hawk has a flight time of 30 hours and can reach much further than NOAA's WP-3D Orion manned flights. The robot planes are part of NASA's Hurricane and Severe Storm Sentinel (HS3) program If you see more stories about local robots being used to help after Hurricane Sandy, send 'em our way!

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