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Thursday, 7 July 2011

OC Robotics to provide snake-arm robot demonstration for Sellafield Ltd

OC Robotics
July 5, 2011

OC Robotics is pleased to announce the signing of a new contract to provide a snake-arm robot capability demonstration to Sellafield Ltd. This first-of-its-kind demonstration for Sellafield will include two snake-arms, deployed using OC Robotics’ Rail&RotateTM platform. The snake-arms will transport a range of end effectors into a purpose-built cell mock-up to demonstrate various decommissioning and inspection capabilities.

Both snake-arms will be variants of the OC Robotics Explorer Range. Each arm will have 22 degrees of freedom (DoF), will measure 2.5m long and 100mm in diameter, and will be remotely operated by joystick through OCRobotics’ bespoke user interface. The first snake-arm will deploy an OC Robotics 3 DoF wrist and gripper. The wrist and gripper will contain a navigation camera and variable lighting, as well as acting as a quick change tool interface with capability to carry electric and pneumatic tools with services fed through the centre of the snake-arm. A custom inspection camera, a swabbing tool, a representative radiological probe, and sampling scoops will all be demonstrated.

The second snake-arm will have a high-pressure water-jetting tool integrated into it. The tool is being supplied by Sellafield Ltd and is of a type currently used for decontamination tasks on their site. This will be an example of how snake-arm robots can be used as a transport mechanism for existing tooling within confined hazardous spaces.

Both arms will be deployed on OC Robotics’ innovative Rail&RotateTM delivery system. This will allow both snake-arms to nose-follow, snaking their way through a metre-thick access hole into the cell. The Rail&Rotate provides both vertical and horizontal entry, options for entering a cell through vertical and horizontal access holes.
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