Delivering Maintenance and Repair Actions via Automated/Robotic Systems

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CAIT project no.: CAIT-UTC-REG9

Fiscal Year: 2018/2019

Status: In Progress

Principal investigator(s): Jie Gong, Ph.D.

Performing organization(s): Rutgers CAIT

Managing organization: Rutgers CAIT

In cooperation with: Port Authority of New York and New Jersey
Partner project manager: Robert Kumapley, Sr. Program Manager

Supported by: USDOT OST-R

UTC, grant, or agreement no.: 69A3551847102


Robots are emerging force in some of the most challenging working environments. Whether they are flying drones or climbing robots, rigid machinery systems or soft robots made from flexible organic materials, their mix of mobility, strength, and configurability poises them to revolutionize the field of infrastructure maintenance and repair. Despite their promise, there is currently no systematic investigation on how robots can be leveraged to deliver maintenance and repairing actions to transportation infrastructure. In particular, there is a lack of understanding on how robotic systems can be used to go beyond detecting defects in infrastructure to actually applying repairs.

The primary goal of this project is to identify and evaluate the feasibility of developing and deploying autonomous systems that can streamline and enhance the quality of common repair and maintenance. The robotic systems currently used in construction offer examples of the feasibility of such systems to safely conduct physical interventions. This project aims to build upon these examples to examine how autonomous systems will be able to intervene and take corrective actions to enhance the durability of transportation infrastructure. The results of the investigation could potentially spawn a new research direction and may revolutionize the way infrastructure is managed, preserved, and renewed.

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