ROVéo: Armadillo-Like, All-Terrain Robot for Nuclear Decommissioning
ROVéo is a robot whose unique four-wheel design allows it to climb over obstacles up to two-thirds its height. Rovenso, the Switzerland-based start-up that developed this prototype, aims to produce a larger-scale model equipped with a robotic arm for use in dismantling nuclear plants. The device, which looks like an armadillo, is very adaptable thanks to its unique mechanical design and the presence of a motor on each leg. The wheels at the end of each leg operate autonomously, and the legs themselves are linked together by only one degree of freedom. This configuration allows the robot to handle uneven terrain just as easily as it cruises over uniform obstacles like a staircase. Rovenso is also developing a remote-control system combining immersive vision and force feedback. Steering is done by synchronizing the rotation of the front and rear wheels. This allows for high-precision maneuvers, including effortlessly reversing course to get out of a dead end.