Wednesday, March 16, 2011

In Japan, Rescue Robots Are Poised to Go From Lab to Quake Scene

Professors in Japan and the United States hope to use rescue robots to help locate survivors and assess conditions in hard-to-reach places during the country’s recovery.

The "robots will probably not be used in the initial days, but they could be called into action soon, as teams begin to search for victims in less-accessible places and assess the damage to collapsed buildings and flooded waterways, Ms. Murphy says.

The most useful robots at the moment, she says, will be aerial drones that can provide instantaneous assessments of the damage to upper levels of buildings, and remotely operated underwater vehicles, or ROV’s, which can help locate underwater objects and determine the condition of bridges and pipelines."

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