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UMN listed among the top 20 robotics engineering schools

April 25, 2016

The University of Minnesota - Twin Cities has been identified as having one of the top robotics engineering schools in the United States for 2016.
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Dr. Nikos Papanikolopoulos Receives George Saridis Leadership Award

February 3, 2016

Professor Nikolaos Papanikolopoulos was honored with the George Saridis Leadership Award in Robotics and Automation from the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers' (IEEE) Robotics & Automation Society (RAS). The award recognizes outstanding contributions of an individual for his or her exceptional leadership, innovation and dedication that benefit the Robotics and Automation commun
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U of M Student Robot Helps Detect Autism Signs

April 24, 2015

Josh Fasching is researching how robots and sensor technology can help in the medical world, particularly detecting behaviors associated with autism. "Head nodding, hand flapping, ear covering, also hand ringing behaviors is another one," Fasching said of the behaviors the robots would be able to detect.
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University Professor uses robots in medicine, agriculture

April 7, 2015

Department of Computer Science and Engineering professor Nikolaos Papanikolopoulos is developing robot and sensor technology to detect visual cues that could determine if a child has autism or a farmer needs to fertilize a certain area of crops.
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Researchers 'Kinect' data to make faster diagnoses

March 10, 2015

The Xbox Kinect has become a U tool for diagnosing mental disorders in children.
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The UMN Scout

The Scout robot has been developed at the University of Minnesota in partnership with MTS, Honeywell, and ATC. The Scout is designed to operate alone or in conjunction with Scouts or other robots. The Scouts are specialized robots that carry out low-level, usually parallel tasks aimed to meet the mission objectives. Scouts can include simple sensory units or units with locomotion, tools or other specializations. All Scouts have a similar form factor to enable delivery by a uniform mechanism of the ranger.

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Further Description

The Scout has a body of roughly 11cm long, and 4cm in diameter (the special foam wheels can expand to 5cm in diameter). This body fits snugly inside a protective covering called a Sabot that absorbs much of the impact during the launch, and allows the Scout to even break through a glass window and land safely and ready to begin its mission.

Variations

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  • The Actuating Wheel Scout version 1 created a wheel system that allowed a dynamic range of wheel diameter from 44 mm to 120 mm, enabling operation on a variety of terrain.

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  • The Actuating Wheel Scout version 2 improved upon the mechanical design of the first version while restoring the launch form factor by enabling a range of 39 mm to 120 mm.

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  • The first generation grappling hook was designed to increase vertical mobility by adding an external grappling hook capable of a single shot.

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  • The second generation grappling hook was designed to replace the winch mechanism for jumping, allowing for a self contained grappling hook system.

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  • This Scout has been modified with an external interface to control the motors of a blimp. Using visual servoing techniques, the blimp can function as an aerial observation platform.

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  • The InfraRed (IR) Scout is enhanced through the addition of a pair of IR emitters. Each emitter is an array of 36 IR LEDs with a combined output close to a small maglight flashligh on the IR spectrum. One IR Scout is capable of illuminating a room for several other Scouts.

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  • This Scout is equipped with an additional motor system capable of two degrees of freedom which allows for a pan-tilt mechanism to observe an area of interest.

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  • This Scout is equipped with a prototype miniature geiger counter for detection of radioactive fields.

    Publications

    E. Kadioglu, N. Papanikolopoulos, "A Method for Transporting a Team of Miniature Robots," Proceedings of the 2003 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems.

    P. E. Rybski, F. Zacharias, J. F. Lett, O. Masoud, M. Gini and N. Papanikolopoulos, "Building Topological Maps with Sensor-Limited Miniature Mobile Robots," Proceedings of the 2003 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation.

    J. L. Pearce, P. E. Rybski, S. A. Stoeter, N. Papanikolopoulos, "Dispersion Behaviors for a Team of Miniature Robots," Proceedings of the 2003 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation.

    Sascha A. Stoeter, Ian T. Burt, Nikolaos Papanikolopoulos. Scout Robot Motion Model. Proceedings of the IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, Taipei, Taiwan, May 2003.

    Andrew Drenner, Ian Burt, Bradley Kratochvil, Brad Nelson, Nikolaos Papanikolopoulos, Kemal Berk Yesin, "Communication and Mobility Enhancements to the Scout Robot" Proceedings of the 2002 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems, Lausanne, Switzerland, Oct. 2002.

    S. A. Stoeter, P. E. Rybski, M. Gini, N. Papanikolopoulos, "Autonomous Stair-Hopping with Scout Robots" Proceedings of the IEEE International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems, pp. 721-726, Lausanne, Switzerland, September/October 2002.

    P. Rößler, S. A. Stoeter, P. E. Rybski, N. Papanikolopoulos, "Visual Servoing of a Miniature Robot Toward a Marked Target," Proceedings of the International Conference on Digital Signal Processing, Santorini, Greece, July 2002.

    A. Drenner, I. Burt, T. Dahlin, B. Kratochvil, C. P. McMillen, B. Nelson, N. Papanikolopoulos, P. E. Rybski, K. Stubbs, D. Waletzko, K. B. Yesin, "Mobility Enhancements to the Scout Robot Platform," Proceedings of the 2002 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, pp. 1069-1074, Washington, DC, May 2002.

    D. P. Perrin, E. Kadioglu, S. A. Stoeter, N. Papanikolopoulos, "Localization of Miniature Robots Using Constant Curvature Dynamic Countours," Proceedings of the 2002 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, pp. 702-707, Washington DC, May 2002.

    P. E. Rybski, A. Larson, A. Schoolcraft, S. Osentoski and M. Gini, "Evaluation of Control Strategies for Multi-Robot Search and Retrieval," Proceedings of The 7th International Conference on Intelligent Autonomous Systems (IAS-7), pp. 281-288, Marina del Rey, CA, March 2002.

    C. P. McMillen, K. Stubbs, P. E. Rybski, S. A. Stoeter, M. Gini, N. Papanikolopoulos, "Resource Scheduling and Load Balancing in Distributed Robotic Control Systems," Proceedings of The 7th International Conference on Intelligent Autonomous Systems (IAS-7), pp. 223-230, Marina del Rey, CA, March 2002.

    P. E. Rybski, S. A. Stoeter, M. Gini, D. F. Hougen, N. Papanikolopoulos, "Effects of Limited Bandwidth Communications Channels of the Control of Multiple Robots," Proceedings of the 2001 IEEE International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems, pp. 369-374, Maui, HI, October 2001.

    P. E. Rybski, I. Burt, T. Dahlin, M. Gini, D. F. Hougen, D. G. Krantz, F. Nageotte, N. Papanikolopoulos, S. A. Stoeter, "System Architecture for Versatile Autonomous and Teleoperated Control of Multiple Miniature Robots," Proceedings of the 2001 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, Seoul, Korea, May 2001.

    D. F. Hougen, M. D. Erickson, P. E. Rybski, S. A. Stoeter, M. Gini, N. Papanikolopoulos, "Autonomous Mobile Robots and Distributed Exploratory Missions," Fifth International Symposium on Distributed Autonomous Robotic Systems (DARS), Knoxville, TN, October 2000.

    S. A. Stoeter, P. E. Rybski, M. D. Erickson, M. Wyman, M. Gini, D. F. Hougen, N. Papanikolopoulos, "A Robot Team for Exploration and Surveillance: Design and Architecture," Proceedings of the International Conference on Intelligent Autonomous Systems 6, pp. 767-774, Venice, Italy, July 2000.

    N. Papanikolopoulos, S. A. Stoeter, P. E. Rybski, M. Gini, D. F. Hougen, M. Erickson, "Experiments with a Team of Miniature Robots," Proceedings of the IEEE Mediterranean Conference on Control & Automation, Rio, Greece, July 2000.

    P. E. Rybski, S. A. Stoeter, M. D. Erickson, M. Gini, D. F. Hougen, N. Papanikolopoulos, "A Team of Robotic Agents for Surveillance," Proceedings of the Fourth International Conference on Autonomous Agents, pp. 9-16, Barcelona, Spain, June 2000.

    D. F. Hougen, S. Benjaafar, J. C. Bonney, J. R. Budenske, M. Dvorak, M. Gini, H. French, D. G. Krantz, P. Y. Li, F. Malver, B. Nelson, N. Papanikolopoulos, P. E. Rybski, S. A. Stoeter, R. Voyles and K. B. Yesin, "A Miniature Robotic System for Reconnaissance and Surveillance," Proceedings of the 2000 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, pp. 501-507, San Francisco, CA, April 2000.