Waterloo University opens advanced robotics facility ‘Robohub’
The massive 3,000 sq foot facility will focus on humanoid, aerial, ground and magnetically-levitated robotics.
Recently, the University of Waterloo opened its advanced robotics research hub, aptly titled Robohub. The giant facility will focus specifically on human-centered robotics, that is robots working alongside humans companions.
According to Pearl Sullivan, the dean of engineering at the Waterloo, the Robohub facility will focus its resources on humanoid, aerial, ground and magnetically-levitated robots. One example is the TALOS robot, a humanoid machine capable of seeing, hearing and feeling the world around it via sensors.
“We recognized that emerging and disruptive technologies, including robotics, machine intelligence, and advanced manufacturing, will transform life, business, and the global economy,” Sullivan says. “Robotics has advanced to perform repetitive and dangerous tasks, but we believe the future is human-centered robotics, which means robots that can work alongside humans. They need to be able to work safely with each other.”
The 3,000 foot test facility creates a space that would allow for a diverse range of robotics to simulate as close to industry experiences as possible. TALOS comes into play as a glimpse into the future of industrial robotics, operating primarily based on the forces it creates, rather than the position of its joints. Created by PAL Robotics out of Spain, the TALOS model that Waterloo received is one of four in the world and the only one outside of Europe.
“The aim of our researchers will be exploring [TALOS’] full potential to work in the healthcare industry, in factories and other industrial settings while getting the most out of these unique features. That is one project we are quite excited about at the moment,” Sullivan says.