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European BADGER Robotics Project Coordinated by UC3M

Photonics.com
Aug 2017
MADRID, Aug. 1, 2017 — The robotics lab at the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M) is coordinating the European BADGER (robot for autonomous underground trenchless operations, mapping and navigation) project to develop an intelligent system for the autonomous excavation of small-diameter, high-gradient tunnels in urban environments.

An intelligent underground robot for urban environments is designed.
An intelligent underground robot for urban environments is designed. Courtesy of UC3M.

"The use of innovative localization, mapping and navigation techniques, along with sensors and georadars, will allow them to be adapted to different land surfaces and aid in the analysis of the work environment and decision-making in attaining the goals," said Carlos Balaguer, project coordinator at UC3M.

BADGER is a project that incorporates robotics in underground environments, autonomous navigation and component integration. The use of ultrasound techniques to perforate the ground, accompanied by a 3D printer on the robot itself to reinforce the tunnel where the cables and tubes lie, also plays a role in the project. Researchers from Germany, Greece, Italy and the U.K. are participating.

BADGER aims to enable sustainable transformation of very congested environments such as modern cities. Thus, it will have an intelligent system that allows installations such as wiring or scoring to be built without trenches or the rerouting of traffic.

"It will notably increase European competitiveness in search and rescue operations (landslides), mining activities, applications with civilian use like water pipes, gas and fiber optics, exploration techniques, mapping, etc.," Balaguer said.

BADGER is funded through Horizon 2020, the European Union Framework Program for Research and Technological Development.

BusinesseducationUniversidad Carlos III de MadridUC3MBADGERrobotroboticsautonomouspartnershipsEurope

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