As a successful and developing partnership between the University of Bristol and the University of the West of England, the BRL represents the largest facility of its kind in the UK. It is nationally and internationally recognized as a centre of excellence for advanced robotics research.
The Bristol Robotics Laboratory engages in a wide portfolio of research, which students can engage with both through teaching and in partnership with a leading researcher on a project of their choice. Themes include:
- Aerial Robots: Research into intelligent aircraft, including autonomous Micro Air Vehicles, specializing in their guidance and control.
- Assisted Living: Research into interactive assistive robots and smart sensor systems to realise person-focussed innovative assistive care solutions for supporting independent living.
- Bioenergy & Self Sustainable Systems: Research into overcoming the energy barrier to deployment of autonomous robots in remote areas utilising microbial fuel cells.
- Biomimetic and Neuro-robotics: Developing robots that can operate in challenging environments, beyond the limitations of conventional sensory devices.
- Medical Robotics: Robotic technology is able to provide precise and accurate sensing and movement capabilities, thus improving patient and surgeon experience.
- Non-linear Robotics: Would you feel confident of approaching and touching a heavy duty production assembly robot in operation? Possibly not…
- Robot Vision: Developing Robots that are able to view, analyse what they see and make decisions in
- Safe Human Robot Interaction: Investigating the aspect of physical and behavioural safety, to enable safe Human Robot Interaction, thus ensuring a robot is capable of performing cooperative tasks with humans.
- Self-Repairing Robotic Systems: Self-healing cellular architectures for biologically-inspired highly reliable electronic systems. Drawing inspiration from nature in how it deals with complex versus unreliable issues.
- Smart Automation: Research into the next generation of advanced robotics engineering systems. Robots that can make human like decisions whilst carrying out manufacturing process.
- Soft Robotics: Soft robotics seeks to make robots that are soft, flexible and compliant, just like biological organisms.
- Morphological Computation: A bio-inspired design approach to robotics that considers morphology/embodiment of robotic systems as a crucial part for the emergence of intelligent behaviour.
- Swarm Robotics: A combination of environmental, social and internal cues could result at the group level in components believed to be important in the emergence of self-organised behaviour.
- Unconventional Computation in Robots: Drawing inspiration from nature to address the issues of distributed manipulation in the micro-scale.
- Verification and Validation for Safety in Robots: Investigating all aspects of safety for verification and validation purposes and to enable safe Human Robot Interaction in cooperative tasks.