California-based company Squishy Robotics is revolutionizing emergency response with its innovative robot designed to assist first responders in dangerous and high-risk situations. Originally designed for missions on Mars or the Moon, Squishy’s robot has found a crucial purpose here on Earth. By accurately assessing environmental hazards and providing essential information, this versatile device ensures the safety of first responders in situations such as wildfires, car accidents, and war zones.
Squishy Robotics initially received a $500,000 grant from NASA in 2014 to research the robot’s mobility in zero-gravity environments using gas thrusters. These thrusters allow the robot to reach areas in space that astronauts cannot access. However, the robot has now transitioned to terrestrial operations and has been integrated with drones for aerial missions.
In February, Squishy’s robot was deployed by a drone to inspect derailed propane tanks in Florida. Not only did it perform a visual inspection, but it also actively monitored air quality and successfully detected gas leaks, potentially preventing a major disaster. The durability of the robot has been tested in various challenging scenarios, including being dropped from an airplane at a height of 1,000 feet and being squeezed into a compact space under a pile of debris to simulate a rescue operation.
The key to the robot’s durability lies in its unique net-like structure that evenly distributes impact forces, protecting its central sensors. These sensors play a crucial role in capturing and transmitting real-time information to first responders. Squishy Robotics has worked with 300 first responders to gather feedback on how the robot can be further optimized for rescue operations.
With its advanced capabilities and potential for further development, Squishy Robotics represents a promising future for emergency response technology. By transforming space exploration into life-saving applications, the company has demonstrated innovation and dedication to prioritizing human safety during critical rescue missions.
– Squishy Robotics website