ANYmal quadruped now equipped with Velodyne’s Puck LiDAR

The ANYmal quadruped performs inspection and monitoring tasks in challenging environments. | Photo Credit: ANYbotics

ANYbotics, the Swiss developer of the ANYmal quadruped, is now equipping its four-legged robots with Velodyne’s Puck LiDAR sensors. The Puck is a compact LiDAR sensor that provides a 360-degree view with real-time 3D data and a 100 meter range.

ANYmal performs inspection and monitoring tasks in industrial environments, including mining and minerals, oil and gas, chemicals, energy and construction sites. It is equipped with combined capabilities to check predefined inspection points and to monitor large scale environments. The robot supports up a 10 kg payload for visual, thermal and acoustic insights.

Equipped with Velodyne’s Puck LiDAR, ANYmal can map industrial environments to detect obstacles and avoid any collisions while navigating harsh environments with a higher level of accuracy.

“Velodyne’s LiDAR sensors provide ANYmal with a constant stream of high-resolution, 3D information about its surroundings, helping the robot safely map and patrol complex and harsh environments,” said Daniel Lopez Madrid, team lead perception at ANYbotics. “The sensors enable precise localization and mapping capabilities our robots need to understand the physical environment they are operating in and any changes such as moving people and objects.”

Velodyne’s sensors provide real-time 3D perception data for localization, mapping, object classification and object tracking. Combining high-resolution image data with a broad vertical field of view, the sensors detect the shape of even low reflectivity objects regardless of their material and movement. This perception capability is critical for advancing safe and effective mobile robot operation.

“ANYbotics robotic solutions excel at automating industrial inspections that provide plant operators information to maximize equipment uptime and improve safety,” said Erich Smidt, executive director Europe, Velodyne Lidar. “By using Velodyne’s LiDAR, the robots can autonomously navigate complex multi-story environments and find the quickest route to perform missions. During operation, the robot’s system can safely avoid obstacles and reliably move over rough terrain.”

Velodyne also recently introduced a software development kit (SDK) that allows customers to use its Vella LiDAR perception software in autonomous solutions. One of the features of the SDK is the ability to translate raw point cloud data into richer data in real time. This can help developers who are building a variety of systems, including autonomous vehicles, drones, industrial robots, mobile robots and more.

ANYbotics in December 2020 closed a $22.3 million Series A round to help scale its quadruped. ANYmal C is one of the lone commercial-class quadrupeds on the market. Of course, Boston Dynamics’ Spot is the most well-known quadruped. It was first commercialized in June 2020.

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