Think Marco Polo, the swimming pool classic, but with fewer wet noodles and more lifesaving robots.
This past spring, a team of engineers created a rover that can pick out the human voice from a sea of noise and follow the sound to its source. The idea is that, whether in a war zone or earthquake, the robot could save the lives of people buried in disaster.
The minds behind the project? Four undergraduate members of Robotics@Berkeley — one of several clubs based in Moffitt Library’s Makerspace that tackle global problems through engineering and design.
“It’s very dangerous to send in humans as rescue personnel, … so that’s a perfect opportunity for robotics,” says Joshua Price ’18, co-founder of Robotics@Berkeley. “If (the robot) gets crushed, it’s expensive, but it’s not a life. It’s nothing compared to a life.”