Robotics

Robot rodeo puts bomb-disposal machines to the test

Aerial drones get most of the attention, but landlocked robots are no slouch in the innovation department. And some of the newest iterations are being put through their paces June 17-21 at the Western National Robot Rodeo.

The 6th annual rodeo, hosted by Sandia National Labs in Albuquerque, N.M., brings together civilian and military bomb squad teams "to see who can most effectively defuse dangerous situations with the help of robots," according to SNL's announcement.

The scenarios that participants -- which include the Kirtland Air Force Base Explosive Ordinance Disposal team -- must navigate change each year, but past rodeos have challenged robots to locate and move simulated fuel rods from a damaged nuclear reactor , and remove simulated explosives from the overhead rack of an airplane.

The full agenda and additional details are available at www.sandia.gov/WNRR.

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