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QUT an international focus for robotics research

11th June 2014

QUT will become a focal point for international robotics research with the establishment of a Centre of Excellence in Robotic Vision.

The Centre will involve experts from three other Australian universities, QUT and international partnerships with universities such as Oxford and Georgia Tech.

QUT robotics researcher Dr Feras Dayoub said the new centre would form one of the largest groups of robotics vision researchers in the world.

Dr Dayoub said QUT was looking for more PhD students to take part in what is some of the most exciting research in the field of robotics and computer vision happening anywhere in the world.

"We want people who are looking to the future, open-minded about the roles robots could play in human life and passionate about this research," he said.

He said the centre would develop the technology to enable robots to understand their environment using the sense of vision so they can undertake complex tasks inside our complex and dynamically changing environments.

"The centre will develop new sensing technologies that allow robots to navigate among people, manipulate objects and interact with humans inside a changing environment such as a hospital, farm and other workplace and inside our homes," Dr Dayoub said.

"Our homes are a complex places for robots. They contain a large number of objects, some of which are static and some are always moving. For a mobile robot to be useful in our homes it has to be able to detect, recognise and track large, and potentially an ever increasing number of object classes using images acquired by its cameras.

"We are heading to a future where robots will take on more and more roles in our daily life from cleaning the floors of our homes, guiding us in museums and morphing into being our cars. And I don't think it is a science fiction to say that our relationship with these robots can become more personal to the extent that they will become care-givers and companions.

"The aim of this technology is to make life easier and improve its quality and one day robots will be seen as part of the family."

Professor Dayoub said QUT had already developing an agricultural robot, AgBot, a small driverless robot that can eradicate weeds with pinpoint accuracy. The robot is being trialled at a wheat farm near Emerald in central Queensland with much success.

Potential PhD robotics students who would like to apply to study at QUT should contact t.peynot@qut.edu.au

Media contact: Rose Trapnell, QUT media team leader, 07 3138 2361 or 0407 585 901 rose.trapnell@qut.edu.au

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