Wednesday, January 29, 2014

SARC Announces Rescue Robots For Nuclear Disasters


SARC, the Society for Advances and Research in Cybernetics has announced plans to develop robots capable of helping in Nuclear disasters.

"SARC Rescue units go where people cannot. For rescue in Space, Nuclear, Deep Sea, or Thermal disasters." - says SARC founder Gianna Giavelli.

The goal is to design units which are semi-autonomous. They use their own intelligence until they reach the critical situation when human operators take over and direct complex repairs or movements.

SARC Repair Cybertrons (SRCs) are not robots. Instead, as Cybertrons, they are cybernetic beings designed from the ground up to mirror humans skeleton, skin, sensory, visual, muscular, auditory, and brain systems. Other Robot systems look like clumsy machines. The SRC has the flexibility and nimbleness to do splits and gymnastics, flips and hand stands. This level of adaptability  is critical so that SRCs can traverse clumsy terrain and get around barriers in disasters. And move quickly and efficiently. If a human can do it, a SRC can also.

"Learning and real neural systems is a big part of the difference between a Cybertron and the clumsy robots we see from DARPA today." said Giavelli. "Modern robotics has gone down a path that is ugly, clunky, and inefficient. Cybernetics offers potential not just in creation of Cybertrons, but also in many areas that help humans such as cybernetic limb replacement, speech for the impaired, the list is endless."

Other Modern Robots: PetMan from Boston Dynamics (now Google), ASIMO, and a SARC prototype

Petman doesn't look very Human but does use balance. Petman uses servos and motors, big metal hinges for joints.

ASIMO, a wobbly pancake footed prototype robot has hands that can grasp

Robots like ASIMO move slowly and clumsily. Petman can run but looks more like the terminator than a human. The goal with SRCs is to move it to a whole new level of speed and gracefullness by using cybernetic principles both in physical design but also in brain design and sensor array processing. Cybernetic cognition is very different from what ASIMO is doing which is running one simple program. Cybernetic cognition is based on simulating hundreds of millions of neurons which have been trained to handle the tasks they encounter. This is done on chips which have 2,000 - 10,000 individual processing units. The technologies initially created to drive computer gaming now are applied to human braining.

A typical SRC installation consists of a body pod with four units, and a control pod with two control units used by human controllers when necessary. For example, in a nuclear reactor rescue, the SRC unit, loaded with operational blueprints and trained with the plants layout, intelligence to overcome obstacles and barriers, can enter into dangerous chambers. Once in position, a human takes over and  turns off valves, makes complex repairs, or simply uses the SRC for intelligence on the situation. With built in meters for heat, radiation, air quality, and standard tool kits, the SRC can take on complex tasks such as welding a plate over a broken nuclear containment pressure vessel, or working the boom to unload spent fuel rods. In space the SRC is the astronauts perfect companion able to go outside the space shuttle and re-attach that missing critical tile. For space station and sattelite repairs the SRC is key, and guided by a humans touch with sense feedback, delicate instruments and tiny wires can be repaired similar to remote surgery robotics.

Inside the CyberPod:
The cyberpod is the control station that lets humans take over once the SRC reaches its destination. Using commercial off the shelf COTS components like Occulus Rift 3-D headgear with motion capture, and robotic hand sleeves and gloves that the person inserts their arms into like remote surgery controls but more fluid, the operator is able to perform both delicate operations like surgery and skilled but more physical operations like lifting or welding. There is no walking control, simply talk to your SRC and point out where you would like to be. "SARK5 can you move closer to that gas pipe by the window?"  SARK5: "Will do!"  "Get a bit closer to the panel please" "Ok is this close enough"  The cyberpod concept is perfect human and Cybertron cooperation, a model we think is how it should be. While fully autonomous SRCs will no doubt get developed eventually, there is so much to do before we get there we believe strongly in the partially autonomous model. It's also much better than a full control model where really much of the magic is lost as humans are really just playing with a toy at that point.

Give Me Muscle!!!
Ahh Strength! Lifting, Running, Kicking. And breathing (yes Cybertrons breathe). Every other robotics company uses servo motors or hydraulic pressure lines. All very non-human ways of delivering motion. The SRCs muscles come from individual muscle fibers, carefully placed on top of bones and bundled together forming layers, sheaths, and bulges just like in humans. The control system may be thousands of times more complex, but it's also thousands of times more subtle and accurate as well. Our first synthetic muscle uses simple electromagnetic principles of perpendicular helicoids which attract when a small charge is applied. The muscle contracts. Put 100 of them together and you've got a bicep you can arm wrestle (and lose). Skinny slighter versions control face muscles. Why bother with this level of detail? I guess it's all part of the concept of a cybertron, something that is more completely in our world with ways of interacting and expressing and sensing that are closer to human.

Give Me A Voice To Sing!!!
Bi-labial fricatives. Glottal Stops. SRCs have them all. With a real air driven speech box and vocal cords. Consonents formed from the tongue and lips moving together. They also have an electronic internal voice for communicating over mobile or back to the CyberPod.  Laughter, tics, soft singing when bored, a real voice is one step closer to human. Is it overkill? Ask yourself who you want to talk to THOG the death machine or SARC5 who laughs at your jokes?                                                        

Cybernetic Language and Object Recognition:
Modeled on millions of neurons, SRCs have a surprisingly human linguistic response. Language is a big part of the SRC especially object identification and linguistic commands for operational motion.
SRC - "I hear something from the left side of the room, look the steam pipe is leaking"
SRC - "There's a person here, I can hear them breathing. Their heart is still beating. There is a lot of blood"  Human - "lift them over your shoulder and carry them out of there" SRC - "No problem, I'm designed to handle 300 pounds of lift!"

SRC is science fiction today and will take a lot of effort to bring it together. But all these technologies are viable and close, the problem is that the direction people have taken with robotics building big lumbering machines is way off track. In Japan, the few robots which are built gracefully are more like chuck-e-cheese animatrons with little real motion or function and no brains. What is needed is some new thinking and someone with the vision and skills to make it happen.

Technical Specification

Weight: 160 lbs self contained
Motion: Bi-Pedal Swing and Gymnastics
Motor Function: Synthetic Muscles wrapped in braided carbon nanotubes
Lift Ability: Able to lift 100 pounds
Torque: Able to generate 200 pounds of turning torque
Speed: Able to run on flat surface at 30 MPH for one hour
Distance: Able to traverse 20 miles
Charge: Able to operate for sixteen hours under low exertion  and three hours under load and stress

Design Targets:
    Able to perform a gymnastic tumble
    Able to do 20 pullups
    Able to throw a knife and hit a bullseye
    Able to vault over a 4' high barrier without loss in speed
    Able to climb a vertical ladder at human speed
    Able to jump over a 6' wide hole
    Able to work in 250 degree environments for 30 minutes
    Able to work in -40 C degree environments for 30 minutes
    Able to perform simple tasks autonomously for six hours
    Able to visually recognize faces and greet
    Able to shake hands
    Able to jump onto a board room desk and do a cartwheel
    Able to pinpoint where a sound is coming from (eg a steam leak hiss)
    Able to warn of approaching areas of high temperature or radiation                 

Tantalum-Hafnium-Carbide inner skeleton
       melting point 4,500 degrees celsius
Titanium Alloy Protectors -  form critical elements like skull, abdomin
Synthetic Tendons created from high temperature silicon with embedded carbon fiber
Synthetic Muscle Fibers - Individually attached and woven into bundles. No servo motors
Micro-Skin with embedded point by point touch, pressure, and heat sensors
Naturally aspirated voice using diaphram, air chamber, vocal resonator, and mouth position
Human like muscular definition bundles and fat definition pads provide proper shapes
Facial FlexiMuscular Substrate - Allows full human facial movement and expression but also critical for labial movements and vocal ability
Separate Abdominal and Cranial battery supplies LIPO-Air
     Vision support system - 5,000 processors Synapse Chip
     Cognitive support system - 10,000 processors dual Synapse Chips. Cranial Battery = LiFePO

     Emotive and Psychological Process, facial expression mgmt
     Neo-Cortex, basic motor control system - 6 dedicated dsp processors 
     touch monitoring system
     auditory monitoring system and pre-phonic analysis
     fast motor learned stability and gymnastic system
     fast twitch emergency response system 

Weight of Components:
    Batteries    65 lbs
    Skeleton    25 lbs
    Muscle       30 lbs
    Tendon        5 lbs
    Skin            20 lbs
                       145 lbs

Weight of electronics and optics:
   optical system:   5 lbs
   brain system   :   5 lbs
     complex:           3 lbs
   neocortex:           3 lbs
   skin pre proces:  1 lbs
   auditory                1 lbs
   vocation and diaphram
                                  5 lbs
   gyroscopic             3 lbs
   muscle sub contrl  5 lbs
                           31 lbs
               total: 176 lbs

Offering / Product:

4 Unit Rescue Team: $100,000,000
    4 SARC Units, May choose any 4 (Regular, RadHard, Bodyguard, Micro, High Temp, HeavyLift)
        Limited to two specialty units. For more add 20M per unit.
    2 Control Pods
        Upgrade to 4 control pods for $20M highly recommended for nuclear installations
    Note: Specialty High Temp and Heavy SARC only available in this package
    If purchasing the High Temp SARC her heat suit is included.

Add Ons: 
    Micro Surgery Kit   $500,000
    Cutting Tools For Rescue and Construction $500,000
    Heat Cutting Tool for Rescue: 50,000
    Advanced Lift (shoulder add on increases lift to 450 lbs): $1,500,000
    Radiation Suit: $100,000
    BulletProof-ness: $500,000 (requires enhanced power and musculature)
    Enhanced Vision for Long distance object analysis and IR vision
    Foreign Languages / 2nd Language Installation (English + Japanese)

Sales Analysis
Nuclear Facilities around the world: 500

SARCDev, the development arm of SARC is currently seeking early purchase orders and investors. For more information please contact SARC Development at SARCDevelopment @

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