To enable a larger audience to use RoboHub’s suite of hardware, both to maximize utilization of the robots and to expand our impact in robotics research and education, remote access to our fleet is being explored as a promising new initiative.
Based on the success of an initial test using a remote-access robot arm to support an FYDP team, this will enable RoboHub to support many different projects and courses without large capital costs for the departments and students to purchase robots and related equipment.
In contrast to in-lab activities, this approach is going to be used to scale the usability of the platforms and enable access to the robots for hundreds of students and researchers both on- and off-campus, even when the university itself is closed.
Remote access can be useful for research, education, and collaboration alike and is planned to be initially offered as a service to Waterloo students, staff, and faculty, then academics at other institutions, and finally to industry partners once the growing pains have been worked out.
The key purpose of this service is to reduce the barriers to researchers and professionals who want to experiment with robotics in general, or a particular robot, without significant capital investment in advance by working with RoboHub and our globally unique fleet of robots.