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Robotics Research at ­mass Lowell That Could Change the World--Really


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Holly Yanco (in purple) and students at the University of Massachusetts Lowell work on a robot.

Researcher Holly Yanco, founder of the University of Massachusetts Lowell Robotics Lab and director of the New England Robotics Validation and Experimentation Center, has received funding for several projects exploring beneficial uses of robots.

Credit: Joson Images/UMass Lowell

University of Massachusetts Lowell (UMass Lowell) researcher Holly Yanco, founder of the university's Robotics Lab and director of the New England Robotics Validation and Experimentation Center at UMass Lowell, will collaborate on several projects designed to help save lives and help people with mobility issues.

Google has provided Yanco with a $50,000 award to support research that could improve the way first responders communicate with each other and robots during emergencies.

A $280,000 award from the U.S. National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) will fund research that will lead to international training standards for teaching emergency personnel how to use robotic technology in the field. NIST also will provide $181,000 to test the durability and performance of robots used in mobile manufacturing environments.

In addition, the U.S. National Science Foundation will contribute more than $550,000 for research that could one day lead to the development of a lower-cost, assistive robotic arm.

"We're looking at creating robots that will work more effectively and safely for people," Yanco says.

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