Dragon Firefighter robot developed by Japanese Researchers to fight fires from a distance

Japanese Innovators Unveil Powerful Dragon Firefighter Robot for Distant Firefighting
Japanese Innovators Unveil Powerful Dragon Firefighter Robot for Distant Firefighting

Dragon Firefighter: A Flying Robot That Extinguishes Fires

Picture a futuristic dragon not breathing fire, but using powerful jets of water to extinguish flames. Thanks to a dedicated team of Japanese researchers, this innovative firefighting robot, named the Dragon Firefighter, could soon join firefighting teams globally, assisting in tackling fires too perilous for human intervention.

The detailed plans for this groundbreaking robot have been openly shared in the scientific journal Frontiers in Robotics and AI. This means that experts worldwide are free to utilize these plans to construct their own Dragon Firefighters, promoting collaborative advancements in firefighting technology.

Dr. Yuichi Ambe, an assistant professor at Osaka University and joint corresponding author, describes the Dragon Firefighter as a remotely controllable flying firehose robot, designed to safely and effectively extinguish fires in buildings by directly approaching the fire sources.

The development of the Dragon Firefighter began in 2016 at Tohoku University under the guidance of Prof Satoshi Tadokoro’s laboratory. A team of 11 researchers and students contributed to refining the robot, collaborating with Japanese firefighters to understand their specific needs.

The Dragon Firefighter employs jet propulsion, utilizing eight controllable water jets to propel itself two meters above the ground. Its flexible firehose, connected to a wheeled cart, can be directed towards flames with the help of a control unit. The cart is linked to a fire truck carrying a substantial 14,000-liter water reservoir.

Water is ejected from the nozzles at a rate of 6.6 liters per second with a pressure of up to one megapascal. The hose’s tip features both a conventional and thermal imaging camera, aiding in pinpointing the fire’s location.

A Dragon Firefighter’s eye of its action when extinguishing a fire. Credit: Tadokoro Laboratory, Tohoku University, Japan

The robot underwent its first trial by fire at the World Robot Summit 2020 (WRS2020) in September 2021, successfully extinguishing a ceremonial flame at a distance of four meters. The study not only outlines the Dragon’s design but also shares insights from this initial demonstration, along with subsequent enhancements.

Dr. Yu Yamauchi, an assistant professor at Akita Prefectural University and another corresponding author, notes ongoing improvements since the WRS2020 demonstration, addressing issues like oscillations and heat-induced deformations.

Future of Firefighting: Taking to the Skies in 10 Years

The study highlights advancements such as enhanced waterproofing, a more versatile nozzle unit, and improved water flow mechanisms. However, the researchers anticipate approximately 10 more years of development before deploying the Dragon Firefighter in real-world firefighting scenarios.

The primary challenge ahead involves extending the robot’s reach beyond 10 meters, requiring the development of firefighting tactics tailored to its unique capabilities. Despite the timeline, the journey toward incorporating this remarkable robot into firefighting teams continues, promising a high-tech ally in combating dangerous blazes.

Google News Icon

Add Slash Insider to your Google News Feed

Source(s): Tech Xplore

The information above is curated from reliable sources, modified for clarity. Slash Insider is not responsible for its completeness or accuracy. Please refer to the original source for the full article. Views expressed are solely those of the original authors and not necessarily of Slash Insider. We strive to deliver reliable articles but encourage readers to verify details independently.