Robots help academics map out the planet’s biodiversity

Harrogate-based Synthotech has been hired by researchers and experts to support a study which could see robots deployed to monitor the state of Earth’s biodiversity.

The researchers consulted with more than 100 international experts, ecologists, and engineers working in biodiversity and robotics to evaluate the potential of robotics and automated systems (RAS), that could extend the scope of terrestrial biodiversity monitoring across habitats globally.

Engineering business Synthotech develops advanced AI-capable robots currently used to detect harmful leaks and fix pipes, which are all designed, developed and manufactured in the UK.
The robots can be deployed remotely for long distances, which speeds up the investigation process to aid safety and reduce environmental impact.

Synthotech is supporting critical biodiversity research, to explore the challenges and understand where robots could be applied for ecosystem monitoring to support biodiversity conservation.

The project has enabled the research team to draw up a roadmap of the monitoring barriers that should be easiest to overcome and give new capabilities in conservation.

Simon Langdale, engineering director at Synthotech, said: “Ecologists are increasingly calling on the help of robotics and automated systems (RAS) experts to monitor the state of global biodiversity.