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  • Robot could ready Red Planet for humans

    Boston Herald - 04/07/2016

    A team of UMass Lowell and Northeastern University researchers will spend the next two years writing software and algorithms to improve Val’s walking, hand coordination and communication. The distance from Earth to Mars means any communication with the robot would be significantly delayed, so manually operating Val is impractical.

    “Every 20 minutes you can say, ‘Check out panel A,’ or, ‘Replace panel A,’ and a robot will have to figure out how to do it, have to do it reliably and fast,” said Taskin Padir, a Northeastern professor. “Robots are still slow and they still need supervision from humans. Our goal is to take steps toward making these systems more autonomous.”

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