Boston Dynamics has announced the debut of sales for Spot, the agile robot that climbs stairs and traverses rough terrain with ease. The launch marks the first time that businesses can purchase a Boston Dynamics robot, and represents Boston Dynamics’ first online sales offering.
Spot is designed to go where other robots can’t go and to perform a broad number of tasks. The robot can be reconfigured for various use cases to increase efficiency and greatly reduce safety risks in the workplace.
Spot was previously only available for short-term lease under Boston Dynamics’ Early Adopter Program. Under that program, over 150 Spot robots were successfully used by businesses and research facilities. Early Adopters used Spot robots to document construction progress, monitor remote or hazardous environments, and provide situational awareness. Spot robots were used in a variety of environments, including power generation facilities, decommissioned nuclear sites, factory floors, construction sites, and research laboratories.
Spot’s modular platform is intended to be easily-configurable, with a number of accessories and add-ons available to customize its use. Participants in the Early Adopter Program tailored these capabilities to apply automation to dynamic environments and increase efficiency. Program results included:
- Saving approximately 20 hours of work per week by automating the capture of nearly 5,000 images weekly on Quebec-based construction firm Pomerleau’s 500,000 square foot building project.
- Increasing data-collection efficiency and safety in Hensel Phelps’ construction of Denver International Airport’s main terminal, and automating the capture of laser scans and 360-degree images to reduce the risk of return visits and project delays.
- Leveraging computer-vision-based anomaly detection software to reduce human risk in potentially dangerous tasks for AkerBP’s energy production facilities.
- Autonomously navigating tough, underground terrain with NASA Jet Propulsion Lab Team CoSTAR’s integrated autonomy, perception and communication tools, an application which ultimately won the most recent DARPA Subterranean Challenge Competition, the Urban Circuit.
Each of these early adopters customized how they deployed Spot by leveraging the robot’s mounting rails, payload ports and software development kit to expand the capabilities of the base robot platform. Many had never worked with a mobile robot prior to working with Spot, but were able to use common web app programming to enable their applications.
“At Boston Dynamics, we have spent decades creating and refining robots with advanced mobility, dexterity and intelligence because we believe agile robots can solve a broad range of real world problems,” said Marc Raibert, chairman and founder of Boston Dynamics. “The combination of Spot’s sophisticated software and high performance mechanical design enables the robot to augment difficult or dangerous human work. Now you can use Spot to increase human safety in environments and tasks where traditional automation hasn’t been successful.”
Spot is intended for commercial and industrial use and is currently only available for purchase in the United States. Boston Dynamics will continue to lease Spot robots to customers in select international markets through its Early Adopter Program.
The Spot CAM+ payload turns Spot into a powerful inspection tool with purpose-built cameras and turnkey integration. Spot CAM+ features a color ring camera with a 360° field of view, for complete situational awareness while remotely operating the robot. A pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) color camera adds a powerful 30x optical zoom, enabling detailed inspections from a distance. Integrated high-sensitivity microphones and amplified speakers enable remote auditory inspections and two-way communications with operators in the field.
Spot CAM+ is fully integrated with Spot’s tablet controller and allows users to stream video from the camera to confidently teleoperate around a site allowing eyes on remote or hazardous environments and focusing on critical inspection details including the capture of high quality images manually or automatically with Autowalk, Spot’s out-of-box autonomy system.
Spot CAM+ image sensors are optimized for low light and its included LED illuminators enable 24/7 operations. The payload is IP65 sealed and can operate from -20 to 45°C. Developers can further customize Spot CAM+ to their applications using its GRPC API.
For more information:: shop.bostondynamics.com