Robots, by their very definition, are adaptable, and yet current robots are clearly limited to a relatively small range of tasks.
A robot to tackle any task has been the ultimate goal of many robot researchers. However, for the foreseeable future the single, general purpose universal robot is not a realistic prospect. The individual demands of each application and environment mean that even the most adaptable robots currently available can only perform well in a small range of surroundings and a specific range of tasks.
Nevertheless, robot technology has developed to the stage where few applications and tasks are beyond the capabilities of a specifically developed robot system - it is just the cost effectiveness of such a development that is in question.
At RUR, our approach is to try and provide the best of both worlds; specifically developed systems to meet the challenges of difficult environment and tasks, but universal technology to maintain cost effectiveness.
We achieve this by developing and maintaining our control and sensor interpretation technology components within a generic framework (abstracted as functional and operational architectures). This allows specific developments to be undertaken cost effectively by maximising the re-use of technology from other applications.