UK-based Forth Engineering has developed and manufactured a rescue robot which can be deployed in disaster zones following an incident.
It can be operated remotely at a safe distance removing the risk of injuries or death to rescuers. The machine has been successfully tested at Sellafield Ltd nuclear site and will be replicated at other plants in the UK.
Benefits of Androids
Emergency situations and disaster scenarios are often tricky and dangerous for human responders. However, robots have the advantage that they can operate in hazardous conditions reducing the risk of injury or loss of human life.
For example, vehicular mishaps entail locating individuals trapped in cars so that they can be given medical attention as soon as possible. Debris removal is also vital to clear accident scenes and reduce traffic congestion.
In crashes involving hazardous materials, robots can handle dangerous substances instead of humans. They can also reach victims in inaccessible places and can even provide initial medical assessment or perform basic procedures.
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Breakthrough in Handling Risky Environments
In addition to accident sites, rescue robots can now be sent to disaster zones and hazardous environments. The company’s managing director, Mark Telford, said that the Rescue Robot is manufactured to offer a safer alternative to sending people into disaster areas.
The successful trial at the nuclear plant in Cumbria proved that the machine is capable of withstanding perilous conditions making it “a real asset to the nuclear industry in the UK”.
The Rescue Robot features a 1.6 tonne compactor excavator, robotic systems, cameras, and lights that can endure hazardous conditions.
It has also a 700bar rescue tool that can cut through obstructions as well as a grapple hook to move obstacles. Furthermore, the robot can tow a trailer containing sand that will be dispersed to contain spillages.
It can be controlled from up to 150 metres away. Furthermore, Mark stated that the robot has been designed so that it can easily be modified to fit different situations.
Hence, the use of the machine is limitless. To make this point, Sellafield Ltd required a 1.6 tonne robot which Forth Engineering delivered. The company was able to adapt the product to any size and fit it with the required tools.
Today, the Rescue Robot is a permanent fixture in the plant on a standby mode to respond to emergencies.
Gus Harding, who is the Security and Resilience Operations Manager at Sellafield, affirmed that robots are beneficial in helping to keep humans out of dangerous situations if there are emergencies.
Robots offer several advantages across various fields and industries because of their capabilities, precision, and adaptability. In the case of rescue robots, they are efficient in reducing injuries and human fatalities in hazardous conditions.