The rise of technology has led to the development of mobile robots. Mobile robots refer to a machine-made with tech-based parts. It is controlled by special software to know how to move around and react to specific environments and situations.
A mobile robot uses physical robotic elements (legs, tracks, and wheels) and AI (artificial intelligence) to function. Because of their capability to do workloads of humans, many industries have started investing in mobile robots. Aside from streamlining work processes, mobile robots are also known to complete different activities that could be life-threatening to humans.
The need to automate the workplace has never been greater. The increased use of mobile devices and cloud-based technology has changed how we work, live, and play in the past decade. This trend, in turn, has created a growing demand for mobile robots to automate routine tasks and help humans be more efficient. Today, companies and organizations worldwide are turning to mobile robots to help them meet their most important business goals and achieve their most ambitious goals.
What in The Robot – Types Of Mobile Robots
You can classify a mobile robot in two ways: the software they use to perform actions and their surroundings.
Listed below are some known samples of mobile robots under the “environment” classification:
- Transportation and autonomous delivery robots are mobile robots intended to deliver raw materials from one area to another in a work setting.
- Autonomous underwater vehicles or underwater robots are designed explicitly through and underwater.
- Unmanned Ground Vehicles – These are also called home or land mobile robots designed to be used within homes or dryland areas.
- Unmanned Aerial Vehicles – Other names for crewless aerial vehicles include aerial robots or drones. As its name suggests, it is designed to navigate through the air.
- Polar Robots – This mobile robot is equipped with features to traverse in unstable environments with cold temperatures.
Now that you know the different mobile robots included in the “environment” classification, let’s move on to the different software or devices used by a robot to perform human activities.
- Legs that look like in either animals or humans
Other types of mobile robots include guided and autonomous mobile robots. Guided robots can only act as a guidance system once they receive the instruction. On the other hand, AMRs or autonomous mobile robots can explore their environment and perform movements without instructions coming from external sources.
AMRs are different from guided mobile robots because they can independently move and explore the environment. On the other hand, guided motors need external guidance, such as sensors, wires, or magnet strips to create slight movements. Because of this, guided robots are considered inflexible, hard to navigate, and is relatively expensive.
Key Features of Mobile Robots
Mobile robots made by different manufacturers are equipped with varying sets of features to optimize the system and let the robot do certain tasks and activities. Industrial mobile robots are the most sought-after systems used in multiple industries today. These mobile robots come with different features that let them perform specific tasks.
The following are the common features that should be present in most mobile robots used for industrial purposes:
- Supervisory software
- Wireless communication
- Fleet stimulation software
- Prebuilt safety systems
- Management software
Works and Functionalities of Mobile Robots
Mobile robots are designed to perform basic functionalities, such as transporting materials, exploring the environment, walking, and completing specific activities using robotic arms and other onboard systems.
The use of mobile robots is widespread in the industrial industry. Its primary functions are security systems, personal assistance, surgeries, and medicine. Two of the most known uses of mobile robots include space navigation and ocean exploration.
Aside from that, mobile robots are also designed to navigate certain areas that are harmful to humans. These include nuclear power plants as the area produces high radiation dangerous for human health.
On the other hand, you can still notice that even though most mobile robots today are designed to be used in nuclear power plants, too much radiation can still damage their system. In line with that, developing mobile robots that can tolerate such situations are still in progress.
Mobile robots are also designed for the following purposes:
- Monitoring and patrolling applications, which include surveying areas with unusual conditions.
- Producing tech-based prosthetics that can copy human body parts and functions
- Robotic arms for surgical purposes
- Strip and paint different structures
- A robotic exoskeleton and pack dog to carry heavy military equipment
- Ship repairing
- Exploring mining areas
Pros And Cons Of Mobile Robots
Mobile robots are known for doing many things that humans can’t. One of the benefits of mobile robots lies in their computer vision capabilities.
These robots are equipped with multiple sensors to allow them to observe the environment and act on it accordingly. This is a valuable aspect in industries that constantly shift and change into new market trends.
Aside from that, AI-based mobile robots are also equipped with integrated intelligence systems. Because of this, mobile robots can learn and adapt to their environments by exploring their surroundings and creating a map. This is an essential feature in most industries to boost productivity.
Another thing you will love with mobile robots is their flexibility. Since they can develop a map, they can quickly adapt to the environment. In line with that, they can also divide the implementation into various installations using a deployment system. Because of this, you can prevent human errors as mobile robots can handle repetitive tasks. Thus, improving work productivity and promoting safety in the area.
On the other hand, mobile robots are not perfect. They come with some flaws like other machines available. Here are some limitations of mobile robots:
- Issues regarding the wireless connection between the data endpoint and the robot itself.
- It can only perform low-level or basic operations unless equipped with high SKUs.
- It has load limitations.
Mobile robots have come a long way from the first Roomba that was vacuumed with a set of wheels to guide it. Now, the latest technology enables mobile robots to work in the real world, performing tasks that were once the sole domain of humans. From inspecting pipelines to helping with packaging, mobile robots are seeing increased use in industries worldwide. But the industry is not without its challenges.