Researchers creating robots that may detect slip and fall hazards in retail areas

Morgantown, WV — Researchers at West Virginia College are engaged on a venture that makes use of robots to assist scale back slips and falls in retail workplaces.

In keeping with a WVU press launch, wholesale and retail staff endure round 570,000 accidents a yr. Grocery/drug shops are among the many workplaces with the best nonfatal harm charges.

The venture builds off earlier WVU analysis that estimated wheel slippage on planetary rovers. That analysis led to the event of a way that enables the rovers, utilizing nonvisual data, to maneuver over tough terrain.

For this present venture, Jason Gross and Yu Gu, affiliate professors within the Division of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at WVU, and their college students are utilizing these robots to detect dangers on retail and wholesale flooring.

“Now we have this skill, because the robotic drives, to observe the onboard sensors and evaluate the wheel velocity versus the precise velocity of the robotic,” Gross stated within the launch. “We will infer slip and might deploy a slip meter often to calibrate that.”

The researchers will start working with a “testbed” that mimics a retail surroundings. They then plan to check the robots, with onboard cameras, in retail areas.

“There’s a vital drawback with slip and fall in retail areas,” stated Gross, who’s additionally interim chair of the Division of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. “So, we’re attempting to determine a means to make use of robots to supply situational consciousness, monitor dangers and supply walkability maps.”

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