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The idea of a robot walking your dog or washing your windows might be appealing, but it’s still far fetched. However, a robotic army is not. But don’t expect those Hollywood-created versions of robotic soldiers, said Howard Smith. Those aren’t necessarily the kind the military is creating.

According to Smith, author of the new book “I, robot” and MIT-trained engineer and artificial intelligence expert, the bulk of funding for artificial intelligence research is not directed toward consumers. Instead, the focus is on developing new weapons and tools for the military.

He goes on to say that advancements in robotics are changing the shape of the U. S. armed forces – and other armies around the world. More than 6,000 robots are already used by U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, and astronomical amounts of money are being funneled into artificial intelligence research.

The military currently uses Predator aircraft drones and bomb-defusing robots – both of which have undoubtedly saved countless lives of U.S. troops. While definite improvements over military weapons of yesteryear, these robots still require a human at the controls.

“But the latest advancements in military robotics and artificial intelligence are aimed at cutting out the middleman, i.e. removing the human factor from the decision making. That’s right, the military is creating weapons that will ultimately ‘decide’ whether to fire weapons. And that dramatically raises the stakes for the military and for civilians,” Smith said.

But one has to look at the drawbacks, such as how to equip a robot with a conscience and how will it distinguish between an armed enemy and a curious child. These are serious questions that must be addressed before these autonomous robots become standard gear for the military.

The United States is not alone in its quest for robotic weapons. Other nations, such as China, Israel and Russia reportedly are developing unmanned military robotics. This high-tech arms race has many artificial intelligence experts wondering if any international agreement will be created to draft a code of ethics for use of robotic weapons.

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Implementasi Robot sebagai asistensi pada saat pengopeerasian di dunia kedokteran. Artikel ini lumayan menarik. Masa depan aplikasi robotik untuk dunia kedokteran. Sedikit bahasa inggris dibawah, silahkan baca, semoga menambah wawasan kita.

In an attempt to improve precision and individualize patient care, some surgeons are looking to computer navigation and robotics for total joint replacement.

At the 9th Annual Advances in Arthritis, Arthroplasty and Trauma Course, Michael J. Fracchia, MD, and Frank Lampe, MD, discussed the latest developments in robotics and computer navigation. Navigation has opened up a whole new world. The recording of real-time objective data will help us with the design, implantation and longevity [of implants].

German researchers are using ultrasound to define the anterior pelvic plane, and the technology could be used in a similar way to aid surgeons performing minimally invasive total knee arthroplasty (TKA).

Surgeons may also incorporate the 3-D laser scanning techniques that are currently used in the automotive industry.

Damaging reports in the media, unfavorable scientific results and a leading court decision noting a higher incidence of complications in robotic-assisted surgery has caused modified industrial robots to vanish from German operating rooms. However, Lampe said that he believes these systems will return if they are time- and cost-effective and safe.

The modiCAS is one robotic system designed for total hip arthroplasty

They should be passive or semi-active, rather than active autonomous systems, and they should provide additional benefits compared to pure navigation.

Robotic systems can be classified into the following categories:

* active, in which the robot executes segments of the procedure;
* semi-active, where the surgeon performs the operation, but is guided by the robot; and,
* passive, in which the robot does not actively execute any segment of the operation.

Disini terlihat tangan robot yang sedang digunakan pada saat operasi kedokteran.

Many companies are developing robotic surgical systems for TJR. Lampe said the modiCAS (modiCAS Ltd.) is a semi-active system developed for total hip arthroplasty. Optical navigation tracks the patients and no patient fixation is necessary. Researchers in Germany are conducting a clinical trial using the system for cup implantation.

More systems

The Acrobot Sculptor (Acrobot), a hands-on, semi-active system, is undergoing clinical investigation for unicondylar knee arthroplasty (UKA).

Similarly, the Makoplasty (Mako Surgical Corp.) system is semi-active and developed for UKA. The surgeon performs bone sculpting using a burr, but receives tactile guidance from a robotic arm.

Salah satu capture display tampilan pada software untuk robot kedokteran.

The Bone Resection Instrument Guide (BRIGIT, Zimmer) is a passive system used for TKA. The only thing that the robot does is position manual cutting guides, and then the cutting is performed manually by the surgeon.

Meanwhile, American researchers from Carnegie Mellon University have developed the miniature, bone-attached robotic system (MBARS) for patellofemoral joint replacement.

[It] is a small bone-mounted, active mini-robot using the parallel hexapod technique. iI is preoperative planning is carried out and no patient tracking is necessary because it is fixed to the bone.

In addition, the Praxiteles (Praxim, Medivision) system is a bone-mounted, passive, mini robot developed for MIS TKA. The system also uses a bone-milling technique that incorporates a passive guide and side-milling tool, Lampe said.

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Ada sebuah artikel menarik di Washington University di St Louis situs tentang peningkatan penggunaan robotics dalam operasi militer. Beberapa peneliti universitas dan Smart dicatat bahwa militer mengharapkan agar robot diimplementasikan sebagai kekuatan sampai 30% di tahun 2020 oleh militer. Dengan peningkatan penyebaran yang tak udara kendaraan (UAV), robot mencari IED dan perangkat pengawasan robot,  dengan ini tampaknya tujuan penciptaan robot akan segera tercapai. Dengan memperhatikan hal itu mungkin waktu untuk yang akan mempertanyakan militer robot dapat digunakan untuk fasilitas keamanan dari radiasi kimia?

Menurut artikel yang ini generasi robot perangkat disebarkan dengan militer AS memanfaatkan beberapa tingkat teleoperation; yang jauh manusia menggunakan perangkat komunikasi untuk mengontrol operasi dari robot. Dpt diramalkan untuk masa depan robot perangkat militer dan keamanan layanan mereka akan memiliki fungsi utama jauh oleh dengan pengendali manusia. Pada umumnya peningkatan penggunaannya diarahkan sebagai robot penolong atau kontrol dari perangkat dan layanan.

Security Roles for Robots

Most military robots currently deployed are being used as human-substitutes in high risk situations like explosive ordinance disposal (EOD) or IED detection. The defining exception to that generality is the use of UAV’s for long-linger time observation of remote areas. This is the most likely model for initial robotic security deployments.

Many large chemical facilities have lengthy perimeters that are difficult to secure. Irregular fence lines, natural and man-made obstructions, and lack of manpower make it difficult to detect and confirm perimeter incursions. Early detection is the key to allowing for adequate deployment times for active security measures.

Perimeter Surveillance

Larger UAV’s like the Predator would not be practical for any but the largest facilities. There are a number of smaller UAV’s that may be more appropriate for large high-risk chemical facilities. They could be used for both routine perimeter patrol and immediate response for checking out intrusion detection system alerts. Adding chemical sensors would allow for their use in monitoring dispersion of chemical clouds.

As the ability to employ semi-autonomous navigation (point-to-point route selection for example) for ground robots improves their utility for perimeter patrol and immediate response will increase. If the operator can navigate the robot by selecting a series of pre-programmed locations instead of driving the robot, a single operator will then be able to operate multiple observation robots. This will go a long way to overcoming the security manpower cost problem.

Armed Robots for Emergency Response

One of the most controversial uses of robotics in military service is the use of the robot as a weapons platform. Even with full teleoperational control of the weapon system, there are still concerns about inadvertent weapons discharge due to control system or communication system malfunction. These concerns may be substantially reduced by using non-lethal weapons.

Many of these concerns, and general concerns about weapons employment in a chemical facility, could be further reduced by adding a redundant safety-interlock to the weapon’s control system. This interlock could prevent the weapon from being discharged in a number of pre-defined situations. ‘No Fire Zones’ could be programmed into the interlock to prevent weapons discharge in unsafe areas of the facility. A flammability sensor could be added to the platform to prevent discharge of a ‘fired’ weapon in a flammable environment.

A Future for Robotic Security

As the military continues to improve the sophistication of their robotic systems it becomes more likely that security robots will be deployed in the defense of high-risk chemical facilities. Not only does the sophistication increase, but the unit cost of these robotic systems will come down. Additionally, the number of experienced robotic operators that are veterans of robotic combat operations will increase.

It is likely that it will be these veterans that will be behind the companies that develop and start the deployment of security robots. With their government supplied education, practical experience, and security training they will be the natural leaders of the robotic security businesses of the future.

The Israel Army is procuring more unmanned ground vehicles for combat missions in border areas. (Memang rencana busuk sudah dijalankan oleh Israel, seperti yang terjadi di Gaza sekarang ini).

The Ground Forces Command has purchased ast least four UGVs for combat missions along the Gaza Strip and Israeli border with Lebanon. The platforms were identified as G-Nius, developed and produced by Israel’s Elbit Systems.

“We don’t need manned patrols along the border,” Elbit Systems president Joseph Ackerman said. “We could use UGVs.” [On Aug. 5, the Israel Air Force announced the deployment of the Sniper electro-optic reconnaissance system. Sniper, developed in Israel by several defense contractors, was said to enable air defense operators to track fighter-jets at a distance of more than 70 kilometers.]

US army in 2020

U.S. technologists have revealed that the country’s military has plans to have about 30 per cent of the Army comprised of robotic forces by approximately 2020.

Doug Few and Bill Smart of Washington University in St. Louis say that robots are increasingly taking over more soldier duties in Iraq and Afghanistan, and that the U.

S. Army wants to make further additions to its robotic fleet.

They, however, also point out that the machines still need the human touch.

“When the military says ‘robot’ they mean everything from self-driving trucks up to what you would conventionally think of as a robot. You would more accurately call them autonomous systems rather than robots,” says Smart, assistant professor of computer science and engineering.

All of the Army’s robots are teleoperated, meaning there is someone operating the robot from a remote location, perhaps often with a joystick and a computer screen.

While this may seem like a caveat in plans to add robots to the military, it is actually very important to keep humans involved in the robotic operations.

“It’s a chain of command thing. You don’t want to give autonomy to a weapons delivery system. You want to have a human hit the button. You don’t want the robot to make the wrong decision. You want to have a human to make all of the important decisions,” says Smart.

The technologist duo says that researchers are not necessarily looking for intelligent decision-making in their robots. Instead, they are working to develop an improved, “intelligent” functioning of the robot.

“It’s oftentimes like the difference between the adverb and noun. You can act intelligently or you can be intelligent. I’m much more interested in the adverb for my robots,” says Few, a Ph.D. student who is interested in the delicate relationship between robot and human.

He says that there are many issues that may require “a graceful intervention” by humans, and these need to be thought of from the ground up.

“When I envision the future of robots, I always think of the Jetsons. George Jetson never sat down at a computer to task Rosie to clean the house. Somehow, they had this local exchange of information. So what we’ve been working on is how we can use the local environment rather than a computer as a tasking medium to the robot,” he says.

Few has incorporated a toy into robotic programming, and with the aid of a Wii controller, he capitalizes on natural human movements to communicate with the robot.

According to the researchers, focussing on a joystick and screen rather than carting around a heavy laptop would help soldiers in battle to stay alert, and engage in their surroundings while performing operations with the robot.

“We forget that when we’re controlling robots in the lab it’s really pretty safe and no one’s trying to kill us. But if you are in a war zone and you’re hunched over a laptop, that’s not a good place to be. You want to be able to use your eyes in one place and use your hand to control the robot without tying up all of your attention,” says Smart.

Devices like unmanned aerial vehicles, ground robots for explosives detection, and Packbots have already been inducted in the military.

“When I stood there and looked at that Packbot, I realized that if that robot hadn’t been there, it would have been some kid,” says Few. (ANI)

Bagaimana dunia di masa yang akan datang ? terutama teknologi militer menggunakan robot.

“””Yang penting itu robot jangan menjadi mesin pembunuh manusia, seperti yang terjadi di GAZA saat ini””” v**me

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Pesawat Shukoi Tiba di MakasarJAKARTA, SABTU — Satu pesawat jet tempur Sukhoi TNI Angkatan Udara (AU) tiba di Pangkalan Udara (Lanud) Sultan Hasanuddin, Makassar, Sulawesi Selatan.

Satu pesawat diterbangkan dari Rusia menggunakan pesawat angkut Antonov AH-124-100 dan tiba di Lanud Sultan Hasanuddin, Makassar, Sabtu, sekitar pukul 11.10 WIB. Demikian dikatakan Komandan Wing 5 Lanud Kolonel Pnb Arif Mustofa di Jakarta, Sabtu (17/1).

Kedatangan satu Sukhoi jenis SU-30MK2 itu disaksikan oleh Kepala Proyek Sukhoi TNI AU Kolonel Mahandono, Komandan Lanud Sultan Hasanuddin Marsekal Pertama I Putu Dunia, Komandan Skuadron Udara 11 Letkol Pnb Iko Putra, dan Komandan Wing 5 Lanud Kolonel Pnb Arif Mustofa.

Perusahaan Rusia penghasil pesawat tempur Sukhoi pada 21 Agustus 2007 mengumumkan penjualan enam pesawat tempur tersebut kepada Indonesia senilai sekitar 300 juta dollar AS (Rp 2,85 triliun).

Enam pesawat Sukhoi itu terdiri atas tiga Sukhoi SU-30MK2 dan tiga SU-27SKM, yang akan melengkapi empat pesawat Sukhoi yang telah dimiliki TNI AU sejak September 2003.

Dengan kedatangan satu pesawat Sukhoi SU-30MK2 tersebut, maka TNI AU kini telah memiliki tiga SU-30MK2 (dua unit telah tiba pada 26 Desember 2008)  yang akan melengkapi empat Sukhoi yang sudah dimiliki TNI AU sejak September 2003.

Penandatanganan nota kesepahaman pengadaan enam pesawat Sukhoi itu dilaksanakan pada 21 Agustus 2007. Pesawat tempur Sukhoi tersebut menggantikan peran pesawat A-4 Skyhawk dan berbasis di Skuadron Udara 11 Pangkalan Udara Sultan Hassanuddin, Makassar, Sulawesi Selatan.

Rencananya tiga unit Sukhoi SU-30MK2 akan diserahkan Pemerintah Rusia kepada Indonesia pada akhir Januari 2009, setelah ketiga pesawat menjalani serangkaian uji terbang dan dinyatakan siap untuk digunakan.

ABD

Dikutip dari KOMPAS  http://www.kompas.com/read/xml/2009/01/17/11573721/Satu.Sukhoi.Kembali.Tiba.di.Indonesia

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Artikel ini sangat menarik untuk dibaca. Baca rencana Amerika serikat di tahun 2020 akan mengaplikasikan 30% sistem robotic utk militernya.


There is an interesting article on the Washington University in St Louis web site about the increasing use of robotics in military operations. University researchers Few and Smart note that the military expects to have robotic forces of up to 30% of the Army by 2020. With the increasing deployment of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), robots searching for IED’s and robotic surveillance devices, this goal seems very achievable. With that in mind it is probably time to ask the question; can military robots be used for chemical facility security?

Teleoperated Robots

According to the article the current generation of robotic devices deployed with the US military utilizes some level of teleoperation; that is a remote human uses a communication device to control the operations of the robot. For the foreseeable future robotic devices in military and security service will have their major functions controlled by a remote human operator. There will be a general increase in the use of self-directed deployment or control of auxiliary devices and services.

Security Roles for Robots

Most military robots currently deployed are being used as human-substitutes in high risk situations like explosive ordinance disposal (EOD) or IED detection. The defining exception to that generality is the use of UAV’s for long-linger time observation of remote areas. This is the most likely model for initial robotic security deployments.

Many large chemical facilities have lengthy perimeters that are difficult to secure. Irregular fence lines, natural and man-made obstructions, and lack of manpower make it difficult to detect and confirm perimeter incursions. Early detection is the key to allowing for adequate deployment times for active security measures.

Perimeter Surveillance

Larger UAV’s like the Predator would not be practical for any but the largest facilities. There are a number of smaller UAV’s that may be more appropriate for large high-risk chemical facilities. They could be used for both routine perimeter patrol and immediate response for checking out intrusion detection system alerts. Adding chemical sensors would allow for their use in monitoring dispersion of chemical clouds.

As the ability to employ semi-autonomous navigation (point-to-point route selection for example) for ground robots improves their utility for perimeter patrol and immediate response will increase. If the operator can navigate the robot by selecting a series of pre-programmed locations instead of driving the robot, a single operator will then be able to operate multiple observation robots. This will go a long way to overcoming the security manpower cost problem.

Armed Robots for Emergency Response

One of the most controversial uses of robotics in military service is the use of the robot as a weapons platform. Even with full teleoperational control of the weapon system, there are still concerns about inadvertent weapons discharge due to control system or communication system malfunction. These concerns may be substantially reduced by using non-lethal weapons.

Many of these concerns, and general concerns about weapons employment in a chemical facility, could be further reduced by adding a redundant safety-interlock to the weapon’s control system. This interlock could prevent the weapon from being discharged in a number of pre-defined situations. ‘No Fire Zones’ could be programmed into the interlock to prevent weapons discharge in unsafe areas of the facility. A flammability sensor could be added to the platform to prevent discharge of a ‘fired’ weapon in a flammable environment.

A Future for Robotic Security

As the military continues to improve the sophistication of their robotic systems it becomes more likely that security robots will be deployed in the defense of high-risk chemical facilities. Not only does the sophistication increase, but the unit cost of these robotic systems will come down. Additionally, the number of experienced robotic operators that are veterans of robotic combat operations will increase.

It is likely that it will be these veterans that will be behind the companies that develop and start the deployment of security robots. With their government supplied education, practical experience, and security training they will be the natural leaders of the robotic security businesses of the future.

The Israel Army is procuring more unmanned ground vehicles for combat missions in border areas. (Memang rencana busuk sudah dijalankan oleh Israel, seperti yang terjadi di Gaza sekarang ini).

The Ground Forces Command has purchased ast least four UGVs for combat missions along the Gaza Strip and Israeli border with Lebanon. The platforms were identified as G-Nius, developed and produced by Israel’s Elbit Systems.

“We don’t need manned patrols along the border,” Elbit Systems president Joseph Ackerman said. “We could use UGVs.” [On Aug. 5, the Israel Air Force announced the deployment of the Sniper electro-optic reconnaissance system. Sniper, developed in Israel by several defense contractors, was said to enable air defense operators to track fighter-jets at a distance of more than 70 kilometers.]

US army in 2020

U.S. technologists have revealed that the country’s military has plans to have about 30 per cent of the Army comprised of robotic forces by approximately 2020.

Doug Few and Bill Smart of Washington University in St. Louis say that robots are increasingly taking over more soldier duties in Iraq and Afghanistan, and that the U.

S. Army wants to make further additions to its robotic fleet.
They, however, also point out that the machines still need the human touch.
“When the military says ‘robot’ they mean everything from self-driving trucks up to what you would conventionally think of as a robot. You would more accurately call them autonomous systems rather than robots,” says Smart, assistant professor of computer science and engineering.

All of the Army’s robots are teleoperated, meaning there is someone operating the robot from a remote location, perhaps often with a joystick and a computer screen.

While this may seem like a caveat in plans to add robots to the military, it is actually very important to keep humans involved in the robotic operations.

“It’s a chain of command thing. You don’t want to give autonomy to a weapons delivery system. You want to have a human hit the button. You don’t want the robot to make the wrong decision. You want to have a human to make all of the important decisions,” says Smart.

The technologist duo says that researchers are not necessarily looking for intelligent decision-making in their robots. Instead, they are working to develop an improved, “intelligent” functioning of the robot.

“It’s oftentimes like the difference between the adverb and noun. You can act intelligently or you can be intelligent. I’m much more interested in the adverb for my robots,” says Few, a Ph.D. student who is interested in the delicate relationship between robot and human.

He says that there are many issues that may require “a graceful intervention” by humans, and these need to be thought of from the ground up.

“When I envision the future of robots, I always think of the Jetsons. George Jetson never sat down at a computer to task Rosie to clean the house. Somehow, they had this local exchange of information. So what we’ve been working on is how we can use the local environment rather than a computer as a tasking medium to the robot,” he says.

Few has incorporated a toy into robotic programming, and with the aid of a Wii controller, he capitalizes on natural human movements to communicate with the robot.

According to the researchers, focussing on a joystick and screen rather than carting around a heavy laptop would help soldiers in battle to stay alert, and engage in their surroundings while performing operations with the robot.

“We forget that when we’re controlling robots in the lab it’s really pretty safe and no one’s trying to kill us. But if you are in a war zone and you’re hunched over a laptop, that’s not a good place to be. You want to be able to use your eyes in one place and use your hand to control the robot without tying up all of your attention,” says Smart.

Devices like unmanned aerial vehicles, ground robots for explosives detection, and Packbots have already been inducted in the military.

“When I stood there and looked at that Packbot, I realized that if that robot hadn’t been there, it would have been some kid,” says Few. (ANI)

Read Full Post »

Artikel ini sangat menarik untuk dibaca. Baca rencana Amerika serikat di tahun 2020 akan mengaplikasikan 30% sistem robotic utk militernya.


There is an interesting article on the Washington University in St Louis web site about the increasing use of robotics in military operations. University researchers Few and Smart note that the military expects to have robotic forces of up to 30% of the Army by 2020. With the increasing deployment of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), robots searching for IED’s and robotic surveillance devices, this goal seems very achievable. With that in mind it is probably time to ask the question; can military robots be used for chemical facility security?

Teleoperated Robots

According to the article the current generation of robotic devices deployed with the US military utilizes some level of teleoperation; that is a remote human uses a communication device to control the operations of the robot. For the foreseeable future robotic devices in military and security service will have their major functions controlled by a remote human operator. There will be a general increase in the use of self-directed deployment or control of auxiliary devices and services.

Security Roles for Robots

Most military robots currently deployed are being used as human-substitutes in high risk situations like explosive ordinance disposal (EOD) or IED detection. The defining exception to that generality is the use of UAV’s for long-linger time observation of remote areas. This is the most likely model for initial robotic security deployments.

Many large chemical facilities have lengthy perimeters that are difficult to secure. Irregular fence lines, natural and man-made obstructions, and lack of manpower make it difficult to detect and confirm perimeter incursions. Early detection is the key to allowing for adequate deployment times for active security measures.

Perimeter Surveillance

Larger UAV’s like the Predator would not be practical for any but the largest facilities. There are a number of smaller UAV’s that may be more appropriate for large high-risk chemical facilities. They could be used for both routine perimeter patrol and immediate response for checking out intrusion detection system alerts. Adding chemical sensors would allow for their use in monitoring dispersion of chemical clouds.

As the ability to employ semi-autonomous navigation (point-to-point route selection for example) for ground robots improves their utility for perimeter patrol and immediate response will increase. If the operator can navigate the robot by selecting a series of pre-programmed locations instead of driving the robot, a single operator will then be able to operate multiple observation robots. This will go a long way to overcoming the security manpower cost problem.

Armed Robots for Emergency Response

One of the most controversial uses of robotics in military service is the use of the robot as a weapons platform. Even with full teleoperational control of the weapon system, there are still concerns about inadvertent weapons discharge due to control system or communication system malfunction. These concerns may be substantially reduced by using non-lethal weapons.

Many of these concerns, and general concerns about weapons employment in a chemical facility, could be further reduced by adding a redundant safety-interlock to the weapon’s control system. This interlock could prevent the weapon from being discharged in a number of pre-defined situations. ‘No Fire Zones’ could be programmed into the interlock to prevent weapons discharge in unsafe areas of the facility. A flammability sensor could be added to the platform to prevent discharge of a ‘fired’ weapon in a flammable environment.

A Future for Robotic Security

As the military continues to improve the sophistication of their robotic systems it becomes more likely that security robots will be deployed in the defense of high-risk chemical facilities. Not only does the sophistication increase, but the unit cost of these robotic systems will come down. Additionally, the number of experienced robotic operators that are veterans of robotic combat operations will increase.

It is likely that it will be these veterans that will be behind the companies that develop and start the deployment of security robots. With their government supplied education, practical experience, and security training they will be the natural leaders of the robotic security businesses of the future.

The Israel Army is procuring more unmanned ground vehicles for combat missions in border areas. (Memang rencana busuk sudah dijalankan oleh Israel, seperti yang terjadi di Gaza sekarang ini).

The Ground Forces Command has purchased ast least four UGVs for combat missions along the Gaza Strip and Israeli border with Lebanon. The platforms were identified as G-Nius, developed and produced by Israel’s Elbit Systems.

“We don’t need manned patrols along the border,” Elbit Systems president Joseph Ackerman said. “We could use UGVs.” [On Aug. 5, the Israel Air Force announced the deployment of the Sniper electro-optic reconnaissance system. Sniper, developed in Israel by several defense contractors, was said to enable air defense operators to track fighter-jets at a distance of more than 70 kilometers.]

US army in 2020

U.S. technologists have revealed that the country’s military has plans to have about 30 per cent of the Army comprised of robotic forces by approximately 2020.

Doug Few and Bill Smart of Washington University in St. Louis say that robots are increasingly taking over more soldier duties in Iraq and Afghanistan, and that the U.

S. Army wants to make further additions to its robotic fleet.
They, however, also point out that the machines still need the human touch.
“When the military says ‘robot’ they mean everything from self-driving trucks up to what you would conventionally think of as a robot. You would more accurately call them autonomous systems rather than robots,” says Smart, assistant professor of computer science and engineering.

All of the Army’s robots are teleoperated, meaning there is someone operating the robot from a remote location, perhaps often with a joystick and a computer screen.

While this may seem like a caveat in plans to add robots to the military, it is actually very important to keep humans involved in the robotic operations.

“It’s a chain of command thing. You don’t want to give autonomy to a weapons delivery system. You want to have a human hit the button. You don’t want the robot to make the wrong decision. You want to have a human to make all of the important decisions,” says Smart.

The technologist duo says that researchers are not necessarily looking for intelligent decision-making in their robots. Instead, they are working to develop an improved, “intelligent” functioning of the robot.

“It’s oftentimes like the difference between the adverb and noun. You can act intelligently or you can be intelligent. I’m much more interested in the adverb for my robots,” says Few, a Ph.D. student who is interested in the delicate relationship between robot and human.

He says that there are many issues that may require “a graceful intervention” by humans, and these need to be thought of from the ground up.

“When I envision the future of robots, I always think of the Jetsons. George Jetson never sat down at a computer to task Rosie to clean the house. Somehow, they had this local exchange of information. So what we’ve been working on is how we can use the local environment rather than a computer as a tasking medium to the robot,” he says.

Few has incorporated a toy into robotic programming, and with the aid of a Wii controller, he capitalizes on natural human movements to communicate with the robot.

According to the researchers, focussing on a joystick and screen rather than carting around a heavy laptop would help soldiers in battle to stay alert, and engage in their surroundings while performing operations with the robot.

“We forget that when we’re controlling robots in the lab it’s really pretty safe and no one’s trying to kill us. But if you are in a war zone and you’re hunched over a laptop, that’s not a good place to be. You want to be able to use your eyes in one place and use your hand to control the robot without tying up all of your attention,” says Smart.

Devices like unmanned aerial vehicles, ground robots for explosives detection, and Packbots have already been inducted in the military.

“When I stood there and looked at that Packbot, I realized that if that robot hadn’t been there, it would have been some kid,” says Few. (ANI)

Read Full Post »

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