Humanoid robots can build real time 3D visual maps

Humanoid robots can build real time 3D visual maps

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UK: Researchers from the University of Bristol have developed computer vision algorithms that enable Samsung’s latest humanoid robot, Roboray, to build real-time 3D visual maps to move around more efficiently.

By using cameras, the robot builds a map reference relative to its surroundings and is able to “remember” where it has been before. The ability to build visual maps quickly and anywhere is essential for autonomous robot navigation, in particular when the robot gets into places that have no GPS signals or other references.

“Mapping in real-time for a biped humanoid is much harder than for wheeled vehicles not only because there is less constant contact with the ground. In the near future, it is expected that humanoid robotic technologies will be able to provide a valuable service to society with robots working alongside people,” said Dr Sukjune Yoon from the Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology (SAIT).

The technology of rapid 3D visual mapping, developed at Bristol, is internationally renowned because of its ability to robustly track and recover from rapid motions and occlusions, which is essential for when the humanoid moves and turns at normal walking speeds. This Bristol work has been used for a number of applications outside robotics too, from augmented reality to commercial applications in the analysis of wearable Gaze data.

Source: University of Bristol