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Robots Can Do Dirty, Dangerous Jobs



For VOA Learning English, this is the Technology Report.

The robot that can clean your house and cook your food may still be a long way off. But robots that can replace humans for work in dangerous environments are closer to becoming a reality. Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburah, Pennsylvania is one of the leading robotics engineering schools.

Scientists there are designing highly developed robots to do uninteresting, dirty and dangerous jobs. One such robot looks like a snake. The snake robot's sixteen joints permit it to pass through narrow spaces like underground nines in nuclear centers. The robot looks for leaks and other damage. Howie Choset is the leader of the snake robot design team at Carnegie - Mello. Professor Choset says there are a lot of places humans with a robot could have a powerful effect on society. The 2011 disaster at the Fukushima nuclear power plant in Japan made clear the need for robots. Robots can work safely in high radiation areas. Another robot, Chimp, can easily move through any disaster area.

Chimp's powerful hands can turn on and off controls and carry out similar jobs. One group at Carnegie Mellon University is developing a robot to perform common jobs. For example, they hope to create a new robot that can carry and deliver things in a hospital or office building. Researchers often make robots play games. These games are designed to teach robots complex tasks.

Scientists hope that, someday, robots of equal intelligence will be programmed to work together.

For VOA Learning English, I'm Alex Villareal.