The main objective of AERIAL-CORE is the development of core technology modules and an integrated aerial cognitive robotic system that will have unprecedented capabilities on the operational range and safety in the interaction with people, or Aerial Co-Workers for applications such as the inspection and maintenance of large linear infrastructures. The system will integrate aerial robots with different characteristics and will be able to meet the requirements of:
- Long range and local very accurate inspection of the infrastructure
- Maintenance activities based on aerial manipulation involving force interactions
- Aerial co-working safely and efficiently helping human workers in inspection and maintenance
AERIAL-CORE modules will implement cognitive capabilities for perception and teaming, aerial morphing to combine long range endurance, navigation with hovering for local observations, manipulation involving force interactions, and co-working with humans. The Figure below illustrates the main objective and involved concepts.
Thus, the particular technical objectives of AERIAL-CORE are:
- O1 Cognitive functionalities for aerial robots including perception based on novel sensors such as event cameras and data fusion techniques, learning, reactivity, fast on-line planning, and teaming.
- O2 Aerial platforms with morphing capabilities, including morphing between flight configurations, and between flying and ground locomotion, to save energy and perform a very accurate inspection.
- O3 Cognitive aerial manipulation capabilities, including manipulation while flying, while holding with one limb, and while hanging or perching to improve accuracy and develop greater forces.
- O4 Cognitive safe aerial robotic co-workers capable of physical interaction with people.
- O5 Integrated aerial robotic system for the inspection and maintenance of large infrastructures and its validation in a very relevant inspection and maintenance application
Aerial co-working safely and efficiently helping human workers in inspection and maintenance
The integration between technology modules will play an important role The system will be demonstrated at TRL 4 and 5 (low TRL modules) and TRL 6 (integrated system with high TRL modules) in electrical power system inspection and maintenance, which is an application with a huge economic impact that also has implications in the safety of workers and in wildlife conservation.