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Press Release 01-078

At WTC Search, Graduate Students Deploy Shoebox-Sized Robots

Robot "babies" go where rescue workers and dogs cannot

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Photo of one of the search and rescue robots.

Photo of one of the search and rescue robots.

Credit: FEMA website


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World Trade Center: Rescue Footage

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From September 12th - 23rd, National Science Foundation-funded researchers aided World Trade Center recovery efforts. University of South Florida engineering professor Robin Murphy and three graduate students took six urban search and rescue robots to "ground zero" in New York to help find survivors. Murphy's 11-day mission was a part of a larger team that recovered remains of six victims. Murphy's robots are unique in that they are small and can maneuver in very tight situations. Tethered and fitted with headlights and cameras, these robots bring distinct advantages to a rescue mission the magnitude of the World Trade Center attacks where the damage is massive and recovery very dangerous. Although they cost between $10,000 and $40,000, Murphy foresees search-and-rescue robots becoming standard equipment in fire departments across the country.

Credit: National Science Foundation & University of South Florida/CRASAR

 

Damage at the collapse site.

Damage at the collapse site.

Credit: University of South Florida/CRASAR


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Graduate students Brian Minten and Jenn Casper near the collapse site.

Graduate students Brian Minten and Jenn Casper near the collapse site.

Credit: University of South Florida/CRASAR


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One of the search and rescue robots.

One of the search and rescue robots.

Credit: University of South Florida/CRASAR


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One of the search and rescue robots.

One of the search and rescue robots.

Credit: University of South Florida/CRASAR


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One of the search and rescue robots enters a sewer.

One of the search and rescue robots enters a sewer.

Credit: University of South Florida/CRASAR


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Group of search and rescue robots.

Group of search and rescue robots.

Credit: University of South Florida/CRASAR


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Operator and monitor.

Operator and monitor.

Credit: University of South Florida/CRASAR


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Robot's 'eye' view.

Robot's 'eye' view.

Credit: University of South Florida/CRASAR


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