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Tiny robot learns to fly a real plane

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posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 11:55 AM
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More news from the robot revolution. Here's a small robot called PiBot that can control a flight simulator for a small plane and a small biplane. They plan on teaching it to fly bigger planes.


A small, hobby-sized robot could herald the pilot of the future. At just 39.7cm (15.6in) tall, PIBOT -- a portmanteau of "pilot" and "robot" and not to be confused with Raspberry Pi-powered PiBot or 3D printer PiBot -- has been trained by researchers at KAIST to fly a human-sized aeroplane.

The PIBOT hasn't flown a full-sized plane just yet, but the team has plans to escalate the project to that stage. Already the robot has successfully flown computer simulations -- and a real-world, scaled-down model biplane.


www.cnet.com...



Would you feel safe on a plane knowing this little robot is somewhere flying it?
edit on 23-9-2014 by neoholographic because: (no reason given)




posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 12:04 PM
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a reply to: neoholographic

He's like a real life R2D2!!!

Anyway, that seems like a really cool technology. If they can teach it that, they can teach it to drive. Who knows, in the future, taxis drivers won't be big and smelly but made out of metal!

I don't know if I'd feel safe or not. Human pilots have glitches just like robots do. It depends how they work the kinks out.



posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 12:30 PM
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originally posted by: neoholographic
More news from the robot revolution. Here's a small plane called PiBot that can control a flight simulator for a small plane and a small biplane. They plan on teaching it to fly bigger planes.


A small, hobby-sized robot could herald the pilot of the future. At just 39.7cm (15.6in) tall, PIBOT -- a portmanteau of "pilot" and "robot" and not to be confused with Raspberry Pi-powered PiBot or 3D printer PiBot -- has been trained by researchers at KAIST to fly a human-sized aeroplane.

The PIBOT hasn't flown a full-sized plane just yet, but the team has plans to escalate the project to that stage. Already the robot has successfully flown computer simulations -- and a real-world, scaled-down model biplane.


www.cnet.com...



Would you feel safe on a plane knowing this little robot is somewhere flying it?


Cheeky bugger! I like it. I take it you mean, "Here's a small robot called PiBot"



posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 12:48 PM
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I, for one, would like to welcome our new PIBOT overlords.

oh boy.



posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 01:14 PM
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originally posted by: neoholographic
Would you feel safe on a plane knowing this little robot is somewhere flying it?
I don't feel that safe in small planes whether the pilot is human or robot, but in larger planes, we already have robots of sorts flying them. There is some concern about this increasing automation:

The Computer vs. the Captain: Will Increasing Automation Make Jets Less Safe?

Computers on board aircraft have made flying safer, but when they encounter errors they can create turmoil. Engineers are pressing ahead with the automation of aircraft, but pilots warn that efforts to computerize jets are going too far and that diminished human control could create dangerous situations.


Also there are lots of pilot functions they didn't show, like the pre-flight walk-around, pre-flight checklist, etc. Robots probably can't do all that effectively yet.



posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 01:41 PM
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a reply to: neoholographic

So did "Pibot" make any autonomous decisions, or did he just push buttons and move the controls in a pre-programmed manner?
EDIT TO ADD: Ah. I see the article. It took visual cues. Very good.


As 'Arbitrageur' said, we already have (and had for a while) computers that could fly planes, including takeoffs and landings. Those computers use feedback from flight sensors and gyroscopes. The article says Pibot uses visual input.


edit on 9/23/2014 by Soylent Green Is People because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 01:44 PM
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Well, they hooked a rat brain to an F-22 simulator and it was able to keep the plane stable in flight, even in stormy weather. It wouldn't be surprising that such an invention is right around the corner...



posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 07:48 PM
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I would not fly with Bishop from Alien 1.
I would however, fly with Bishop from Alien 2.

Give me THAT Bishop and you got yourself a deal.



posted on Sep, 24 2014 @ 02:38 AM
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It just makes a lot more sense to me to make it all digital, contained within the existing flight system, like the auto-pilot system, rather than having an actual humanoid robot manipulating the controls. Of course you would have to create a system to apply some amount of physical force to manipulate certain things, but I just think it would be more practical. Maybe I'm wrong, and perhaps there are situations where a robot would be more effective or desirable. But there are many switches and buttons that require an operator, and these would all have to be digitized. You wouldn't want a button that could both be pushed by a human as well as switch states internally, because then the button or switch would show one state while it would actually be something else. But if everything becomes digital at some point then perhaps an entirely contained system would be more feasible.

You would still have to include many more sensors and maybe even cameras as well to do it all internally, which maybe means that the robot would be a more cost-effective solution. I'm not really sure.



posted on Sep, 24 2014 @ 09:21 AM
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originally posted by: JiggyPotamus
It just makes a lot more sense to me to make it all digital, contained within the existing flight system, like the auto-pilot system, rather than having an actual humanoid robot manipulating the controls...


Yes. Which type of "robot pilot" is better? Our current robot pilots (autopilot systems), which take their input DIRECTLY from gyroscopes, air speed indicators, altimeters, etc., seem much better suited to fly a plane than a robot which relies on visual cues.

...HOWEVER, I can see this "Pibot" exercise as being a very useful exercise for robotics in general, if not really an improvement over current autopilots. Through exercises such as this in which visual cues play a part in helping the robot perform an intended task, robotics and AI researchers are learning quite a bit about how to make a robot be able to interact with humans in varied everyday situations.

Sure -- they may not be creating a more efficient autopilot, but they certainly learning a lot about how robots can use visual cues in general.



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