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Autonomous systems and robotics have long found application in highly structured environments, performing repetitive operations with high speed and precision.  As enabling technologies develop, robots are increasingly being used in more open environments and in a variety of applications.  It is estimated that autonomous systems and robotics will yield a global impact measured in the trillions of dollars by 2025.

In safety critical industries such as oil and gas and nuclear, robots are replacing human technicians in routine assembly, maintenance and inspection operations. In other industries such as construction and logistics, robots are delivering significant increases in process efficiency through a combination of task optimisation and execution with super-human speed, accuracy and repeatability.

Developments in artificial intelligence (AI) such as deep end to end learning and advanced neural networks are leading to ever-increasing levels of autonomy in robotic systems, enabling their deployment in complex environments with little or no human supervision.  Technologies such as visual inertial SLAM (simultaneous localization and mapping) are facilitating new functionalities and behaviours in autonomous vehicles, particularly unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).  Swarm robotics is opening up previously inaccessible locations, enabling autonomous mapping of difficult environments and rapid target location.

Perception, behavioural prediction and validation remain critical issues for any autonomous system.    Solutions will likely rely on new developments in sensors, kinematics, dynamics, and control architectures, and protecting these complex solutions will be key to establishing and maintaining an edge in what will be a highly competitive market.

Our Control Systems and Robotics team has experience in protecting innovations in many key application areas.  We have expertise in surgical robotics, autonomous vehicles and robots for hazardous environments. We regularly work on robot navigation systems including vision based navigation, robot mapping, route finding and guidance. Our experience and expertise cover a wide range of relevant technology, including robot architectures and hardware platforms, sensor systems, image processing, autonomous control, complex processing systems and haptic feedback.

We can draw on the experience of attorneys who have degree and higher level qualifications in mechatronics, electronic engineering, mechanical engineering, software, computing and physics.