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CNET News Video: Is this a real RoboCop?
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CNET News Video: Is this a real RoboCop?

3:02 /

The K5 robot, developed by Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Knightscope, is designed to be a surveillance robot for law enforcement, private security firms, schools, and anything else looking for an extra set of eyes and ears on the ground. The 5-foot, 300-pound robot can roam autonomously, sending back real-time data about an area with technology that does facial recognition, lidar mapping, and 360-degree video. CNET's Kara Tsuboi got a closer look at what makes the K5 robot tick.

-So on top of the Knightscope K5, the first thing we have is the LIDAR and the LIDAR actually will give you a 3D map of the environment. It will take a 270-degree image of the room around it or the space around it and allow it to actually create a 3-dimensional map. Coupled with that, you have GPS, you have DGPS which will actually allow it to locate itself. We've got monitors on the wheels to tell what distance it's traveling. And then we have ultrasonic sensors around it to tell anything else it might be on a closer proximity to it. So now we move down to the first sensor there, and on the first sensor there we have 4 cameras positioned on each side of the K5. The cameras will see 360 degrees. We have nighttime vision capability, daytime vision capability, and also thermal imaging as well. Any of the information that is immediately relevant so we need something to send an alert for example. That data can be immediately transferred. Then you have data that's stored on it and then when we go to park the unit on its charging station, we take those opportunities to load the data into either to a local server or to the Cloud. On the side these are the inlets for the microphone so we're not recording people's voices or people's conversations. We're recording ambient noise level so we wanna make sure that if something's going on and people are screaming we're able to detect that and say hey there's something going on in this particular area. In the future we will also have weapons-of-mass-destruction-sensing capability, so we wanna be able to detect radiation, chemical, biological weapons and also airborne pathogens. So that's the sniffing portion of it. -So right now those features are not in this prototype. -Correct. Right now we in the beta prototype we're offering optical character recognition. We'll get to that in a moment. The 360-degree video capability and the LIDAR mapping. So the K5 also has optical character recognition. Optical character recognition will allow the robot to read license plates, so if you have somebody in the area with a stolen car, a wanted felon, anything like that, again we'll be able to send out an immediate alert to the appropriate authorities to act on that. The Nightscope K5 is also fully autonomous. It runs around on its own as we said before, uses the LIDAR to map the area and then it's on electric battery. The battery gets charged automatically and it can run up to 24 hours, it won't do that but it's capable of running 24 hours but it knows at certain intervals it's gonna go and seek out a charging station, but in the future we're gonna be able to go up and down curbs, offroad. This particular one we can go on just about any surface, grass, concrete and the like, small bumps, ramps, things like that. This will run up to 18 miles per hour. -Okay, but I imagine in a shopping mall it has a cruising speed. -It's actually gonna be much lower. Normal operation is probably gonna be somewhere between 1 and 3 miles per hour.
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