The Internet of Robotic Things

3Q 2014 | Technology Analysis Report | AN-1818 | 20 pages | 6 tables | 7 figures | PDF

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The Internet of Things (IoT), the technologies, architectures, and services that allow massive numbers of sensor enabled, uniquely addressable “things” to communicate with each other and transfer data over pervasive networks using Internet protocols, is expected to be the next great technological innovation and business opportunity. It will exceed in size and importance both the personal computer and mobile communications markets, and even the development of the Internet itself.

At this time, most IoT initiatives are focused on using connected devices with simple, onboard, passive sensors to manage, monitor and optimize systems and their processes. This alone will be hugely impactful; however, it is not too soon for forward-thinking companies to explore the more advanced and transformational aspects of ubiquitous connectivity to, and communication among, smart devices.

This research study introduces the concept of the Internet of Robotic Things (IoRT), where intelligent devices can monitor events, fuse sensor data from a variety of sources, use local and distributed “intelligence” to determine a best course of action, and then act to control or manipulate objects in the physical world, and in some cases while physically moving through that world. It will also examine the many ways IoT technologies and robotic “devices” intersect to provide advanced robotic capabilities, along with novel applications, and by extension, new business, and investment opportunities.

Table of Contents

  • 1. INTRODUCTION
  • 2. WHY THE IORT IS IMPORTANT
  • 3. DEFINING THE INTERNET OF ROBOTIC THINGS
    • 3.1. Classes of Edge Devices
    • 3.2. Robotic Edge Devices
  • 4. TAILWINDS
  • 5. ROBOTICS AND THE INTERNET OF THINGS
    • 5.1. Sensors and Sensing
    • 5.2. Generalized IoT Impact on Sensors and Sensing
    • 5.3. Manipulation and Grasping
    • 5.4. Generalized IoT Impact on Manipulation and Grasping
    • 5.5. Mobility and Navigation
    • 5.6. Generalized IoT Impact on Mobility and Navigation
    • 5.7. Intelligence
    • 5.8. Generalized IoT Impact on Intelligence
    • 5.9. Autonomy
    • 5.10. Generalized IoT Impact on Autonomy
  • 6. ROBOTICS AND IOT CROSS-ENABLEMENT
    • 6.1. Supporting Robotic Object Recognition and Manipulation
    • 6.2. Increasing Intelligence
    • 6.3. Extending the IoT with Highly Sensored, Intelligent, Mobile Devices
    • 6.4. Robots as Nexuses of Interaction and Control
    • 6.5. Manipulation and Mobile Manipulation
  • 7. SIZING THE IORT OPPORTUNITY
  • 8. SEIZING THE IORT OPPORTUNITY: APPLICATION SCENARIOS
    • 8.1. Robotic Smart Toys
    • 8.2. Dexterous Assembly
    • 8.3. Automated Guide Vehicles
    • 8.4. Personal Robots
    • 8.5. Industrial Coworker Robots

Tables

  1. Representative Sensor Types Common to Robots and Robotic Technology
  2. Using the IoT to Enhance Robotic Smart Toys
  3. The IoRT in Support of Fine, Dexterous, Automated Manufacturing
  4. Supporting AGV Movement in Dynamic, Unstructured Environments
  5. Producing Highly Functional, Reasonably Priced, Personal Robots
  6. The IoRT in Support of Fine, Dexterous, Automated Manufacturing

Figures

  1. Three Classes of IoT "Edge Products"
  2. "Robotic" Edge Devices
  3. Self Describing "Things" Enable Object Recognition and Manipulation
  4. A Multi-tiered Data-sharing and Execution Architecture
  5. Highly Sensored, Intelligent, Mobile Devices Act as IoT Enablers
  6. Robots as Social, Human-machine Interfaces
  7. Robots as Social, Human-machine Interfaces


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