Spanish scientists design a robot to support firefighters

Inspenet, February 1, 2023

Spanish scientists, Noelia Fernández Talavera, from the Rey Juan Carlos University (URJC) in Madrid, and Juan Jesús Roldán-Gómez, from the Autonomous University of Madrid (UAM), have created a prototype robot capable of supporting the interventions of firefighters at indoor fires.

The researchers from the UAM and URJC propose that, in a fire situation, the robot intervene before the firefighters, using its sensors to collect information about the scene and the fire, such as temperature, air quality, in order to help and protect firefighters.

In addition, the robot can carry one or more normal or thermal cameras to help locate flames and victims, making it easier for firefighters to plan faster interventions with less risk.

“In the future, robots such as the one developed could assume more responsibilities in tasks such as extinguishing the fire itself, the search and rescue of the victims, the mitigation of certain dangers, the prediction of the evolution of the flames, the structural analysis of the building or the transport of materials”, indicate the creators of the robot.

This new firefighter support robot is modular and low-cost, although with high performance, capable of monitoring the terrain in a targeted manner or carrying out autonomous exploration, calculating fast and safe routes to its objectives on its own.

The robot is equipped with ultra-broadband beacons and ultrasonic sensors to help locate and detect obstacles. Sensors have also been installed to measure temperature, relative humidity and air quality (eCO 2 , TVOC, H2 and ethanol). “These measurements are sent in real time to the base station and are recorded in a database, to measure the environmental conditions of the fire, detect the location of the fire source accurately and allow firefighters to make the most appropriate decisions. in each case”, detail the researchers.

Fernández Talavera and Roldán-Gómez’s team exposes the technical details of their robot in the Journal of Field Robotics, under the title “An autonomous ground robot to support firefighters’ interventions in indoor emergencies”.

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Photo : UAM / URJC

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