Types of Robots

Published on: Feb 19 2011 by Zaheer

Robot is basically is computerized mechanical device designed to perform complex tasks. Robot is a machine that performs a series of complicated and complex tasks automatically. The concept of robots is presented in so many different ways in the movies like The Jetsons, The Terminator, Star Wars, R2-D2 and C-3PO, Robocop, The Matrix and Robots. The idea of robots has long been captivated the minds of the humans. Often the term robot is characterized as ‘an artificial human being’. Robots are the perfect example of human creativity. Certainly, it’s an intelligent invention which few years back was just a fantasy. Today, we have these robots in real form assisting human beings in several different ways. To prove our point we can given several different examples like industrial robots, toy robots, robots designed to explore the space, robots for medical field, robots for agricultural tasks, robots to perform daily house chores, and above all the robots used to perform services as a caretaker to the elderly and handicapped.

Following are given some of the examples of robots actively used in different areas of life:

Industrial Robots: The application of robots in the industrial sector is becoming more and more common. Robots are assigned the jobs where accuracy, precision, repetitiveness, stamina, and credibility are required. The industries where robots are performing hard and complex jobs bring far better production results. In the recent few decades, robots have become the part of several different industries. For instance, robots are doing complex jobs the automobile industry, i.e. assembling a chassis of the vehicles; doing dispensing jobs; palletizing and packaging goods; laboratory applications; and also in the electronic industry wherein robots are used to put electronic components precisely on the printed circuit boards

Mobile Robots: Mobiles robots are commonly called Automated Guided Vehicles (AGV). Mobile robots are widely used for the transportation of material from one place to another. There applications can be seen in large hospitals, container ports, or in warehouses. Mobile robots make use of wires or markers, lasers or vision to perform by sensing the environment. The most advanced and recent from of the mobile robots is Self Guided Vehicles (SGV). The SGVs are devised in a manner to operate independently. Some of the popular forms of SGVs are PatrolBot Gofer, SpeciMinder, and Tug. Mobile robots are more suitable for tasks that are not repetitive or sequential, especially in the complicated settings. Due to this feature, they are often referred to as intelligent robots.

Robots Used in Agriculture: You may find the idea of robots working in the fields performing different tasks such as planting seeds, ploughing and harvesting a little odd. Though, such robots are still in their experimental stages, yet we have an example from Australia where a robot shears sheep. However, the robots which are still in their experimental stages are devised to perform multi-agricultural tasks like transplant seedlings, prune grapevines or pick apples etc.

Telerobots: Telerobots perform the tasks in the settings which are considered perilous to humans. Also, these are devised to operate in an environment which is not easily accessible for humans. An operator normally controls the actions of these robots. In medical field, the use of telerobot can be seen in the laparoscopic surgery. Telerobots also enable the doctors to communicate and treat their patients with the help of distantly positioned telerobots. This feature of telerobots helps the doctors to communicate and treat their patients who are residing in far off places. Another use of telerobots can be seen in nuclear power plants wherein the robots carry out all the tasks including handling the harmful material and complex nuclear tasks.

Telerobots are also used in space exploration. The robots are used to perform the tasks in the space such as maintenance of the satellites, robotic arms for manufacturing in space etc. telerobots are also helpful in the building of space stations, space ships etc.

Other uses of the telerobots can also be seen in military. The most apt example is that of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) which are used for supervision and target the enemy. The advanced technology has improved the working of the UAVs to an extent that they can take their decisions autonomously now such as selecting the location, or targeting any specific enemy. The use of telerobots in the military can be seen in Afghanistan and Iraq wherein United States using telerobots to diffuse Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs). Like Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, there is also an Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) that is used to carry out different military tasks.

Service Robots: Service robots are the robots which are devised to carry out the tasks other than any industrial setting. Japan is heading the world in the production and implementation of service robots. Service robots are classified into two categories: service robots for professional jobs and service robots for personal use. Service robots which are devised to perform professional services are those mentioned above which are used in agriculture, industry, space exploration and in military.

However, the robots for personal jobs are used for care-giving, pet robots, entertainment and for house chores like dusting, cleaning etc. the personal use robots are getting fame quickly because of their usefulness and high class Artificial Intelligence. Personal use robots are made with maximum level of Artificial Intelligence while in service robots the Artificial Intelligence is not that high. Making a personal use robot and furnishing it with high level of intelligence is a costly process.

The appearance of the first incredible walking humanoid, Asimo paved the way for many other intelligent machines like house keeping robot called Wakamari and Aibo which is a robot dog. In Japan, several different robocon competitions are held where different companies bring their designs. Soccer matches are held between robots and also fighting matches etc. this really is a good way to encourage the unique ideas in the rapidly emerging robot making industry.

Perhaps the most useful personal use robots are the ones which are specially designed to take care of the elderly people. Such robots are capable of performing different tasks such as carrying the handicapped or bedridden citizens, washing and other daily house chores. Besides, these there are robots which are devised to offer mental services to the people. These robots are designed to offer therapeutic results by communicating with the elderly who are lonely and friendless.

These are the few types of robots, but we can expect to have more enhanced and improved humanoid types in the coming future as the popularity graph of these robots is going higher and higher.


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