Female Mine Exploration Robot

Roland Piquepaille writes, “The grandmother of an engineering student at the University of Arizona has an old mine on her property. What could be inside? Would it be safe to explore it? She — the student, not the grandmother — decided it was better to send a robot inside and she teamed with another robotic enthusiast to build a radio-controlled rover to explore the mysteries of the old mine. The 18-inch-long and the 7-inch-high robot can communicate with them via a 900 MHz radio modem and send them videos from inside the mine. Theoretically, the robot has a seven-mile range line-of-sight, but the team is not so sure. So the robot is also tied with a rope to pull it out of the mine if necessary, especially if it falls into a big hole. And did I mention this robot is a ‘she’? They decided the machine was female “because the rover is independent, sometimes unpredictable and able to do the seemingly impossible” and they called her ‘Green Meanie.’ You’ll find more technical details and photos in Roland Piquepaille’s blog. Jessica Dooley and Keith Brock, who built the robot, are both members of the UA Aerial Robotics Club.

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