Remotely Deployable Aerial Inspection using Tactile Sensors

MacLeod, C., Cao, J., Pierce, S., Sullivan, J., Pipe, A. G., Dobie, G. and Summan, R. (2014) Remotely Deployable Aerial Inspection using Tactile Sensors. AIP Conference Proceedings, 1581. pp. 1873-1880. Available from:

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For structural monitoring applications, the use of remotely deployable Non-Destructive Evaluation (NDE) inspection platforms offer many advantages, including improved accessibility, greater safety and reduced cost, when compared to traditional manual inspection techniques. The use of such platforms, previously reported by researchers at the University Strathclyde facilitates the potential for rapid scanning of large areas and volumes in hazardous locations. A common problem for both manual and remote deployment approaches lies in the intrinsic stand-off and surface coupling issues of typical NDE probes. The associated complications of these requirements are obviously significantly exacerbated when considering aerial based remote inspection and deployment, resulting in simple visual techniques being the preferred sensor payload. Researchers at Bristol Robotics Laboratory have developed biomimetic tactile sensors modelled on the facial whiskers (vibrissae) of animals such as rats and mice, with the latest sensors actively sweeping their tips across the surface in a back and forth motion. The current work reports on the design and performance of an aerial inspection platform and the suitability of tactile whisking sensors to aerial based surface monitoring applications.

Item Type:Article
Faculty/Department:Faculty of Environment and Technology > Department of Engineering Design and Mathematics
ID Code:32885
Deposited By: Dr J. Sullivan
Deposited On:23 Aug 2017 14:35
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 15:20

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