Boston Dynamics’ robot dog has a new job, herding sheep in New Zealand


Rocos, a leader in Robot Operations software based in New Zealand,  announced its partnership with Boston Dynamics, a leader in mobile robotics. Rocos is providing remote mission design and execution as well as teleoperation functionality, enhancing Spot’s existing capabilities.

Boston Dynamics’ four-legged robot, Spot, is being used in agriculture to herd sheep.Recently, the robot has also been used to enforce social distancing in Singapore, and to screen COVID-19 patients at a Boston hospital.

As a mobile, durable, and customizable robot, Spot has been built to go where other robots can’t. Coupled with the Rocos platform, Spot can be easily managed from a remote location, missions can be designed and edited on the fly, and sensor data collected on the mission can be accessed by remote teams. Spot can also be manually teleoperated to investigate issues, capture new data, or be redirected as required.

This is particularly important for industries where autonomous robots have been embraced – such as utilities and agriculture. Equipped with payloads like heat, LIDAR, gas and high resolution camera sensors, Spot navigates rugged environments to capture data in real time – feeding this data back into existing business systems, wherever they are located. In the energy sector this provides real-time anomaly detection as well as access to historic digital records for comparison. In agriculture, farmers can access information such as more accurate and up-to-date yield estimates. This provides access to a new category of automation, and a safer, more efficient business.

“The age of autonomous robots is upon us. We’re working with organizations embracing this technology to achieve next-level business performance. Our customers are augmenting their human workforces to automate physical processes that are often dull, dirty, or dangerous. I’m excited to be working with the world class team at Boston Dynamics as we help organizations scale their adoption of robotics.” David Inggs, CEO, Rocos.

Through the use of this joint technology, organizations can plan and schedule missions, remotely operate their robots in the exploration of uncharted territory, capture 3D visualizations and other sensor data in their environment, navigate risky or dangerous terrain, and proactively intervene in required situations. All of this possible in either offline or online modes.

In early testing, the Boston Dynamics team based in the US, navigated previously uncharted terrain in New Zealand, remotely accessing Spot through Rocos’ web UI.

“We’re excited to see Rocos enabling key features for Spot for our industry partners. The industry applications we’re exploring with Rocos will see this important technology create new efficiencies for businesses – globally.” Michael Perry, VP of Business Development, Boston Dynamics.

About Rocos

Founded in 2017, Rocos provides a cloud platform to build and manage robot operations, enabling organizations to connect, monitor, and control robots – at scale. Rocos is inspired by a globally connected future, where autonomous robots accelerate change for good — and provide some of the important technology that will get us there.

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