Robosoft and SRI International demonstrate innovative elder care service robot at Robobusiness

Boston 19 April 2009At Robobusiness 2009, Robosoft, France and SRI International, USA, will demonstrate robuLAB10, a service robot designed to assist the elderly in their own homes. The robuLAB10 robot integrates SRI's Karto navigation software, enabling the robot to navigate, follow, and assist a person from room to room. The robuLAB10 robot is being designed for developers and integrators seeking to build home-centric service robots.


"The market for home-centric robots that provide assistance to the elderly is one of our priorities", stated Vincent Dupourqué, CEO of Robosoft. "We've chosen to equip this service robot with SRI's Karto localization technology. Beyond the technical quality of this software, we see the collaboration with SRI as a major plus for developing our activities in the United States."

"A core requirement for any home-centric robot application is the ability to navigate interior spaces both safely and reliably", stated Doug Bercow, director of business development at SRI. "We are very pleased that Robosoft selected SRI's navigation software, which leverages existing navigation technologies that have been validated in military and transportation robotics and can easily transfer to robots for residential use."

Developed for domestic environments, the robuLAB10 robot, equipped with a voice interface allowing access to internet services, is a proof-of-concept demonstration. The next three-years phase will focus on developing a turnkey solution with relevant technology suppliers and partners, with the intention of large scale deployment of such elder care robots.

Robosoft worked with SRI to integrate SRI's Karto navigation software on the robuBOX, Robosoft's robotic programming system allows to develop interfaces for making daily tasks transparent to users. The robuBOX, with Karto navigation software, is a complete and flexible set of service robotics programming solutions.

Robosoft and SRI began their technical collaboration in 2008 with the goal of developing innovative commercial offerings in the growing home-centric service robot market. The launching of the development of the robuBOX took place in 2006. Several robots equipped with preliminary versions of the robuBOX were already deployed. Estelle, the robot of tele-echography is in operation in 4 French hospitals. robuCAB is an automatic vehicle guided by GPS, as well as generic mobile platforms like the robuLAB10 for the assistance at home or the robuROC for safety. The robuBOX, which allows the customers to build many solutions of advanced robotics, was developed and can be modified thanks to the environnement Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio.

SRI International's Karto software development kit enables robotic solutions developers to integrate intelligent navigation, mapping and exploration capabilities into their mobile robot platforms. Since its release in 2007, Karto has been tested on more than twenty different robots and is compatible with more than a dozen laser sensors. The technology behind Karto is the result of over two decades R&D by SRI International and is exceedingly accurate for generating large area maps of up to 2000 square meters which are accurate to within one centimeter. Karto is available for Linux, Windows, and Mac OS.

Silicon Valley-based SRI International is an independent research and technology development organisation. Founded as Stanford Research Institute in 1946, SRI has been meeting the strategic needs of clients for more 60 years. The non-profit research institute performs client-sponsored research and development for government agencies, commercial businesses, and private foundations. In addition to conducting contract R&D, SRI licenses its technologies, forms strategic partnerships, and creates spin-off companies. SRI has been an expert in robotic software research and development since the founding of its Artificial Intelligence Center in 1966. Today, SRI continues its leadership in the field with a sophisticated suite of high-level robotic reasoning capabilities that have been deployed on a number of mobile robots. More company news can be found in the VMW May 2006 article SRI International completes collaborative demonstration of remote robotic surgical system aboard NEEMO 9 undersea space station.

Robosoft is the European expert in service robot solutions. With over 20 years of scientific and industrial expertise in this domain, Robosoft has been supplying advanced robotics solutions in the transportation, security, cleaning, supervision, health and research industries since 1985. Beyond professional applications, the era of personal robotics is approaching fast. Robosoft believes that its service robots, called "robuters", will be part of everyday life within the next five years.

According to the Japan Robotics Association's predictions, the world market for service and personal robotics will reach 17 billion dollars by 2010. Robuters will make everybody's life easier in activities such as entertainment, education, culture, health, support for the elderly and the handicapped, etc. In order to make these applications a reality, Robosoft already integrates 80 percent of programming complexity into its robuBOX, a module programmed using Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio. robuBOX is already incorporated into the heart of Robosoft robots, but can also be licensed to robotics integrators and manufacturers for mass production. More company news is available in the VMW April 2008 article A first for ROBOSOFT, PRISME and their partners: robotised tele-ultrasound examination via satellite.

Source: Robosoft

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