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By Shane Lasley
Metal Tech News 

Spot the autonomous robot surveyor dog

Metal Tech News - November 9, 2022


Last updated 11/9/2022 at 6:18am

Boston Dynamics Spot robot fitted with ExynAI, Trimble X7 3D scanning system.


Upgraded Exyn Technologies' level-four autonomy and Trimble's 3D scanning system, Boston Dynamics' Spot robot dog has been transformed into a state-of-the-art surveyor.

Boston Dynamics' Spot fitted with Exyn autonomy and Trimble 3D scanning tech.

Upgraded with the powerful autonomy offered by Exyn Technologies and Trimble's advanced 3D scanning system, Boston Dynamics' Spot robot dog has been transformed into a state-of-the-art autonomous surveyor that can traverse, image, and map complex environments without the need for GPS or other guidance.

"The integration of autonomous surveying technology into a construction workflow has groundbreaking potential," said Aviad Almagor, vice president of technology innovation at Trimble. "It can improve operational efficiency and transparency throughout the build lifecycle while also transforming worker safety for potentially hazardous data collection."

While Spot the robot survey dog was designed with construction in mind, it is not hard to see this same combination of Exyn's autonomous navigation abilities, Trimble's high-accuracy 3D laser scanning, and a four-legged platform that can traverse complex industrial environments being a useful tool in the mining sector.

Exyn's powerful ExynAI software, which offers level four autonomy that does not require GPS or the robot to "learn" about its environment beforehand, is already being used in the mining sector. This level of autonomy allows Exyn drones to autonomously fly in and map underground mines with unprecedented speed and accuracy.

This level of autonomy and sophistication is so powerful that it piqued the interest of Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions, which forged a partnership with Exyn to merge technologies into autonomous underground mining equipment that does not need GPS or even a wireless underground telecommunications network to self-navigate subterranean environs.

More information on the Sandvik-Exyn collaboration can be read at Glimpse of mining future unveiled at PDAC in the March 8, 2021, edition of Metal Tech News.

Likewise, Spot has proven to have the agility, perseverance, and skills to be a miner's best friend by taking over the risky and mundane tasks at mines around the globe.

Learn more about how Spot is being used in mining environments at Spot is the golden retriever of mine data in the April 28, 2021 edition of Metal Tech News.

It was only a matter of time before the level-four autonomy developed by Exyn was integrated with Spot's ability to navigate a world that is unstructured, unlevel, and dynamic.

Boston Dynamics Spot robot dog surveying an underground mine in Canada.

Courtesy of RMUS/UAS

A Boston Dynamics Spot robot carrying out underground inspections at Glencore's Kidd Creek copper-zinc-silver mine.

Now, this self-guiding four-legged robot is carrying a Trimble X7 scanning system, which provides high-speed and highly-accurate 3D laser scans and images to capture the state of the environment. This data can be uploaded to the Trimble Connect collaboration platform for further analysis and comparisons with previous scans to evaluate progress or risks.

Equipped with ExynAI autonomy and carrying the Trimble X7 payload, Spot has been transformed into a surveyor capable of delivering highly detailed and accurate maps of industrial environments with minimal human intervention and risk.

"Industry has been waiting for reliable and robust autonomous technology to transform difficult and dangerous activities," said Exyn Technologies CEO Nader Elm. "Exyn's technology is helping to enable a new front in human-robot collaboration. By working with preeminent leaders such as Trimble, we aim to create adaptable, state-of-the-art systems to tackle the complexities across construction and industrial environments."

Author Bio

Shane Lasley, Metal Tech News

With more than 15 years of covering mining, Shane is renowned for his insights and and in-depth analysis of mining, mineral exploration and technology metals.

Email: [email protected]
Phone: 907-726-1095


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