Innovation investor Strategic Elements (ASX: SOR) has filed three patents over autonomous robotics technology being developed by its subsidiary Stealth Technologies that has potential commercial use in security, mining and agriculture.
Stealth’s autonomous robotics platform AxV is a robotic vehicle that can operate autonomously without people for extended periods and has been specifically designed for rugged and remote environments.
Two patent applications cover “low-cost” solutions developed by Stealth that increase reliability and mitigates against system failures in autonomous robotic vehicles.
The third patent application covers robots designed to automate perimeter security intrusion detection systems.
The patent filings follow last week’s announcement of Stealth securing a deal with the Western Australian Department of Justice and US$100 billion company Honeywell to develop a fully autonomous security vehicle for WA’s Eastern Goldfields Regional Prison.
The company has the right to retain all intellectual property it develops under this collaboration, as well under another partnership with the University of Western Australia for electric vehicles.
Redundant compute patent
One of the three patent filings has been lodged to cover new redundant compute technology developed by Stealth.
Autonomous vehicles rely on onboard compute to control driving and act as the ‘brain’ of the vehicle, performing critical roles including determining the vehicle’s location, interpreting input from sensors and navigating and avoiding obstacles.
Failure of this compute could cause a catastrophic accident or injury to people, so Stealth has developed a “low-cost, innovative solution” to overcome a potential compute failure and allow the vehicle to “seamlessly continue its missions”.
Emergency braking patent
The second filing covers another low-cost solution developed by Stealth, this time enabling emergency braking to bring autonomous vehicles to a halt in the event of a power failure, which could have potentially caused the vehicle to continue its momentum to roll forward or down an incline.
Automated perimeter intrusion detection robotics patent
Perimeter Intrusion Detection Systems (PIDS) testing is a physical, mundane and repetitive task that needs to completed regularly to ensure the system is functioning adequately and will detect intrusion attempts.
It can also use significant human resources as facility perimeters often span kilometres and can be infeasible to test manually, potentially leaving facilities open to undetected intrusions.
Stealth’s custom robotics built on top of its autonomous mobile platform enables fully automated PIDS testing 24/7.
This robotics enables testing of multiple technologies including microphonics, microwave, buried electromagnetic cable and photoelectric beams.
According to Strategic Elements, this technology can provide increased security and reliability without increasing operating costs.
3D printing enables rapid prototyping
Strategic Elements said Stealth’s strategic use of 3D printing is enabling the rapid advancement of intellectual property and prototyping.
“Rapid prototyping has enabled the team to develop in days what could have potentially taken months,” the company stated.
AxV robotics platform
The first release of Stealth’s AxV platform is in the form of the autonomous security vehicle.
Under its collaboration with Honeywell and the WA Department of Justice, Stealth is scheduled to begin final validation and acceptance testing of the vehicle in the third quarter and will also investigate the vehicle’s potential use in other facilities with some changes, such as using 4g or 5g networks.
Outside of this collaboration, Stealth can independently market to sectors including transport, energy, defence, government bodies and utilities.
In addition, the underlying technology of the AxV robotics platform is scalable to a range of vehicle shapes and sizes, and custom robotics are adaptable to perform a variety of physical actions.
“Further releases from the platform could be deployed for industries such as mining, agriculture and logistics,” Strategic Elements said.