The Navy’s New Lizard-Like Robots

The Navy’s New Lizard-Like Robots

Ship in harbor. By pixabay

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The new tools of the US Navy are AI-powered lizard-like robots developed by Gecko Robotics.

The company explains that these wall climbing robots are used for non-destructive testing inspections of tanks, boilers, pressure vessels, piping, and much more, utilizing specially designed sensor payloads to inspect wall thickness, pitting, and numerous forms of degradation.

“Our robots collect 1,000x more information with continuous data capture at speeds an average of 10x faster than previous methods. Using specially-designed sensor payloads, the robots can inspect wall thickness, pitting, and many other forms of degradation,” reads the company’s website.

According to Interesting Engineering, the robots were designed and rigorously tested to withstand harsh conditions, so they could be prepared for deployment anywhere in the world.

The gecko robots could greatly benefit the US Navy as it would allow for more targeted maintenance instead of replacing entire sections that might not even require repair. The Navy green lit utilizing the wall climbing bots and their AI-powered software platform in March of 2023.

The Navy reportedly hopes this will help create digital models of their vessels and therefore reduce maintenance cycle times and keep ships from being taken out of service for drydock. The current process is extremely costly, and sometimes whole sections are taken out of commission for no real reason.

While these robots are revolutionary and extremely helpful, they are still operated under the supervision of humans who make the real decisions. This technology will assist with the decision-making process, but not make the decisions on its own, as the company believes there is a need for a human to make the decisions to really encapsulate their risks.