Rolls-Royce creates a 3D scanning bug

new robot inspects engines using 3d scanning

See that little bug crawling across the floor?  Don’t step on it! It just may be a 3D scanning Rolls-Royce robotic cockroach coming to save the day.  Wait, what!? Let me read that again. No. You heard me right. Rolls-Royce, that awesome car company, has apparently exhausted all of its automotive ideas and has decided to go into the bug business, and no I don’t mean VWs. Just recently Rolls-Royce has announced its plans to roll out (or crawl out) a tiny little robot that look like a cockroach. What its going to do is to crawl inside airplanes and look for problems.  Now I know what you are thinking. If I saw a cockroach crawl on board the plane, I would probably greet it with the bottom of my shoe, and I am sure, so would you. So what’s new? Well that bug is not made to crawl onto the passenger cabin, but it will crawls into the engine and by using 3D scanning to detect problems.

the robot revolution

This bug is going to get things done.  Now I know that there is talk about the robot revolution. People are saying that the robots are coming to take our jobs.  Well, move over, because the cockroaches are eyeing your paycheck, too. These little robot-critters are able to crawl into airplane engines and check out the situation.  They go in and scope out the area using 3D scanning to detect if there are any problems or not. “So what?! I can do that.” you say. But that little bug is going to save a lot of time and money for airlines.  If the job were done manually, the engine would have to be removed along with the casing to see if there were any problems. That can take hours to do. With this little guy, you just sent him in and he does a quick five minute scan of everything, and the result may be that they won’t need to take anything apart.

What will they make next?

The Rolls-Royce robo-bug was the result of a teaming up of Rolls-Royce and Harvard Institute.  Who knew that if you mix an awesome car company like Rolls-Royce and a high level university like Harvard, you’d end up with mechanical insects, but that’s what happened. The project took about eight years to complete.

Other than the fact that you may lose your job to a roach, the news is pretty cool.  And that isn’t all. Rolls-Royce has some other plans to use creepy crawly critters. One of those is a snake that slithers into tight spots to inspect areas.  As we know, Rolls-Royce is about quality, so having these kinds of inspection tools can help them keep quality in check. The bug can go where the inspector’s eye can’t.  So the next time you see a bug crawling across the floor, be sure that it doesn’t have any 3D scanning lenses on it. After all, it just may be a robo-roach walking home from a hard days work.

Keep reading: more articles about 3D scanning

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