A system and method for maintaining communications in urban environments by utilizing an automatic robot radio relay system
The U.S. Navy seeks to commercialize U.S. Patent Applications 11/832,065 (Wireless, self-contained relay device), and 11/832,103 (Relay device deployer systems).
Mobile robots are increasingly used for operations conducted in life-threatening and hazardous environments, such as in mining and explosive disposal applications. Control and communication of current robot systems usually rely on line-of-sight communications. High-frequency digital and analog radios currently used are subject to limited battery power, signal range, and interference that is undesirable when used in urban environments and dangerous settings. To overcome these limitations, power amplifiers and larger antenna can be added for increased signal range; however, constrained real estate, increased battery power consumption, and robot mobility become issues.
SSC Pacific has developed a method and system for using a robot and relay radio system to maintain the communications link between the user and the robot. The system is platform independent, continuously monitors the network, and automatically deploys relay radios when the signal falls below a predetermined threshold. Each relay radio automatically positions itself upright and opens
to release the antenna. The radios form a network, and maintain a line of sight between each radio to complete the link between the user and the robot.
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- SD 782, March 2008. SSC Pacific, San Diego, CA 92152–5001. Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited.