Robotics is a field that is growing day by day, and service robots seem to be the latest luxury of the future – as if we’re not lazy enough already. The company Fraunhofer Institute has released an update to Care-o-Bot, a service robot that came to the robotic scene in 2008.
The latest prototype of the robot is able to glide around and accomplish a variety of tasks. It is able to pick up objects including bottles and drinks and move them to where they are needed. The robot is programmed to work in household environments, so just imagine how useful it could be. Multiple sensors help it know what to pick up and where to bring it without banging into objects and obstacles. Care-o-Bot comes with a mountable tray to assist in carrying things.
The service bot has gone from 20 degrees of freedom to 31 including spherical joints at the torso and neck to let it bend and twist with ease. Its communication skills have also been boosted and now it can convey information through a touchscreen, body gestures, sounds, text-to-speech, and even a laser pointer embedded in its arm.
Dr. Ulrich Reiser of Fraunhofer Institute says; ‘Customers can choose between a wide range of sensors, you might choose to have color cameras in the front and a 3D TOF camera in the back, or several 3D-TOF cameras. The sensor ring is equipped with its own computation unit and receives power supply and Ethernet via standard connector, so you might have several sensor rings and exchange them for different applications.’ The battery is a 30Ah and will typically last between three and five hours, depending on factors like the specific application and the number of degree of movements used.
Pricing has not yet been announced, but sales are set to begin in the second half of the year. The Care-o-Bot will only be available in Europe initially and then later on expand to the US. Check out the video below for more details: