Taking out the trash is an inherently dirty job, but someone’s gotta do it. If Volvo’s ROAR project has its way, garbage men will be replaced by autonomous, two-wheeled robots.
ROAR (Robot-based Autonomous Refuse handling)
According to Volvo’s press release “Imagine a robot that quietly and discreetly enters your neighbourhood, collects bin and empties it into the refuse truck. It is done without waking the sleeping families and without heavy lifting for the refuse truck’s driver. This is the purpose of ROAR, a joint project with the aim to develop tomorrow’s smart transport solutions.”
This joint project involves Volvo, the Chalmers University of Technology, Mälardalen University in Sweden, Penn State University, and waste recycling company Renova, all with the goal of producing safe, quiet machines that streamline the trash collection process and reduce lifting strains on humans.
“Within Volvo Group we foresee a future with more automation,” says Per-Lage Götvall, Volvo Patent Coordination Manager. “This project provides a way to stretch the imagination and test new concepts to shape transport solutions for tomorrow.”
As far as ROAR goes, a working prototype will be tested in June 2016 on a real garbage truck manufactured by Renova.