Life-Long Infrastructure Free Robot Navigation

Lead Research Organisation: University of Oxford
Department Name: Engineering Science

Abstract

In the future, autonomous vehicles will play an important part in our lives. They will come in a variety of shapes and sizes and undertake a diverse set of tasks on our behalf. We want smart vehicles to carry, transport, labour for and defend us. We want them to be flexible, reliable and safe. Already robots carry goods around factories and manage our ports, but these are constrained, controlled and highly managed workspaces. Here the navigation task is made simple by installing reflective beacons or guide wires. This project is about extending the reach of robot navigation to truly vast scales without the need for such expensive, awkward and inconvenient modification of the environment. It is about enabling machines to operate for, with and beside us in the multitude of spaces we inhabit, live and work. Even when GPS is available, it does not offer the accuracy required for robots to make decisions about how and when to move safely. Even if it did, it would say nothing about what is around the robot and that has a massive impact on autonomous decision-making.Perhaps the ultimate application is civilian transport systems. We are not condemned to a future of congestion and accidents. We will eventually have cars that can drive themselves, interacting safely with other road users and using roads efficiently, thus freeing up our precious time. But to do this the machines need life-long infrastructure-free navigation, and that is the focus of this work.We will use the mathematics of probability and estimation to allow computers in robots to interpret data from sensors like cameras, radars and lasers, aerial photos and on-the-fly internet queries. We will use machine learning techniques to build and calibrate mathematical models which can explain the robot's view of the world in terms of prior experience (training), prior knowledge (aerial images, road plans and semantics) and automatically generated Web queries. The goal is to produce technology which allows robots always to know precisely where they are and what is around them. Robots have a big role to play in our future economy, but underpinning this role will be life-long infrastructure-free navigation.

Planned Impact

Impact Summary It is hard to understate the importance of the transport of goods and people in daily life. We depend on it totally. Any increase in efficiency, access, safety or reliability will have a major economic and societal impact. This proposal aims to achieve just those things. We will use information engineering, computing and robotics to provide a low cost underpinning for smart vehicles in civil, defence and industrial domains. Such vehicles offer the possibilty of end-to-end goods transportation - from raw materials to point of sale. They promise improved efficiency and safety on our roads. They give our aged, infirm and sensorially impaired citizens the hope of independent personal transport. Our aim is to enable this without requiring new navigation infrastructure. Car manufacturers have long been interested in improving driver experience and safety through sensing and processing. The vision of this proposal reaches beyond better parking sensors or lane detectors to real automotive autonomy and assisted driving. Robotics science has a massive role to play. In 2008, 2000 people were killed on UK roads due to driver error or concentration loss. We can address this by building cars which interpret their surroundings hundreds of times a second, never grow weary and access the cumulative experience of all cars. We need not wait for complete autonomy. The path to driverless transport is rich with exploitation opportunities. For example, smart cars can aid congestion control systems where humans currently respond to flow control signals in overly cautious and far from optimal ways. Cars that control themselves efficiently will improve flow, reduce congestion, pollution and transit times. There are energy considerations too. The CO2 cost of manufacture of the average sedan is 11% of its total life footprint. A fleet of autonomous cars operating ceaselessly in our cities would increase transport capacity and increase the person miles/kg CO2. Access to independent transport is another huge motivation. We insist, with good reason, that only the able can drive cars. We often preclude the infirm, partially-sighted and otherwise disabled, demanding that their access to roads be dependent on the munificence of others and public transport. Ultimately, autonomous cars, capable of operating on our roads as they exist now, operating beside and amongst traditional cars will extend the reach of transport to these disadvantaged citizens. This research is driven by this ultimate goal and the belief that this can be achieved by putting smarts in individual cars alone rather than on the roads themselves. The UK Department for Transport is a partner in this project and will ensure relevance to the UK's transport and logistics portfolio. Industry already benefits from precision robot navigation. For years now factories have been serviced by automated guided vehicles (AGVs) but they require awkward installation of beacons or buried wires. Using similar methods, ports in Australia and Singapore are fully automated. Infrastructure-free navigation will benefit AGV producers through market generation and users through increased efficiency. We will see increased coverage, cheaper operation and greater flexibility. There is a prima-facie need for autonomous vehicles in the defence sector. Our armed forces are keen to use smart robots for urban reconnaisance in anti-terrorist and rescue roles. The importance of mobile autonomy in national security is made clear by a US Congressional Mandate that an astounding one-third of all ground vehicles in the US Armed Forces will be unmanned by 2015. Impact will be driven by the involvement of partners representing automotive (Nissan), defence (BAe), industrial (Guidance Ltd), sensing (Navtech), international academic (MIT) and policy-making (DfT) sectors. It will be managed through licensing and inter-partner coorperation. It will be generated by first-class robotics research.
 
Description This grant has been transformational. Not only did it result in 54 publications and a flotilla of patents, but it produced the UK's first self driving car. It allowed me to build a team that is changing the landscape of robotics in the UK. A team that is technically strong enough to put its name against a fleet of autonomous vehicles carrying people around the streets of Milton Keynes. From my perspective the technical outputs surpassed , by a large margin , that which I hoped for. We now have infrastructure free navigation being demonstrated over 1000 km, we have low cost high resolution 3D maps of the nation's cities, we have fascinating and unusual algorithms that kick open the door to life long learning for mobile platforms.

Bringing all the work together on a platform as profound and challenging as the Robotcar acted as spring-board for more ambition. We rolled the impact agenda out to cover other kinds of platforms , space, warehousing , rail and nuclear. It allowed the creation of national platform for robotics research , and indeed a platform grant.

All of this was underpinned by a rich substrate of information engineering , machine learning and computing. The reader is invited to browse the list of publications can patents to witness and understand deeply this weaving of CompSci, Engineering, Design and application.
Exploitation Route The story of EPSRC's support for research that my involvement with continues with a £5 million Programme Grant that has just begun (March 2015). I am already looking at how big data could be harnessed in this area and will be linking up with some new industrial names for robotics exploitation.
And finally, this has all resulted in the creation of one of the UK's most exciting spin outs Oxbotica, which seeks to apply the science of mobile autonomy, to anything that moves on land. We will start with cars.
Sectors Digital/Communication/Information Technologies (including Software),Environment,Government, Democracy and Justice,Transport

 
Description Paul Newman and Ingmar Posner run the Mobile Robotics Group (mrg.robots.ox.ac.uk). One of their flagship projects has been the Oxford Robotcar (www.robotcar.org.uk) which has received remarkable international attention. This project is the instantiation of 5 year's of work within MRG, bringing together threads of work on navigation, mapping planning and perception. A particular focus and success of their work is the use of commodity sensors (rather than expensive bespoke ones) and value of the algorithms developed across multiple application domains. UK's First Autonomous Car on Public Roads: Robotcar's demonstration to policy makers has been a major contributing factor in the strategic review of autonomous cars by the UK government. Newman and Posner worked with the Dept for Transport to use the vehicle's development as pilot scheme resulting in the Robotcar being the first autonomous car in the UK being given permission to run on the public roads. National Impact:Demonstrations of the Robotcar (a ride) to the UK minister for science was instrumental in robotics being named as one of the eight great british technologies. On the back of this, the UK government has recently launched a nationwide (£10M) competition for councils to prepare their cities for autonomous cars operation. The Robotcar has been the focal point of a deep collaboration with Nissan bringing 600K of investment from Tokyo into the University Impact Beyond Cars: The infrastructure free navigation and perception algorithms and software developed to run on the Robotcar have found application beyond the vehicle itself. For example the vision system has been licensed for use on the ESA ExoMars mission, and the autonomy system is being incorporated into a series of "pods" small electric vehicles that will operate in Milton Keynes in 2016 as part of the LUTZ project.
First Year Of Impact 2010
Sector Construction,Digital/Communication/Information Technologies (including Software),Education,Security and Diplomacy,Transport
Impact Types Societal,Economic,Policy & public services

 
Description Driverless Cars
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Gave evidence to a government review
URL http://www.policyexchange.org.uk/publications/category/item/eight-great-technologies
 
Description Intelligent Workspace Acquisition, Comprehension and Exploitation for Mobile Autonomy in Infrastructure Denied Environments
Amount £1,093,660 (GBP)
Funding ID EP/J012017/1 
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2012 
End 10/2017
 
Description Mobile Robotics: Enabling a Pervasive Technology of the Future
Amount £4,991,610 (GBP)
Funding ID EP/M019918/1 
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 03/2015 
End 02/2020
 
Description Nissan Collaboration 
Organisation Nissan Motor Company
Country Japan 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution 0.5M GBP income raise by a collaboration with Nissan Motor Company. This resulted in a demonstration of driverless car technology to the worlds media in Feb 2012. In October 2010 a collaborative deal was signed with Nissan Motor Company Inc. They are placing, at their own cost, an RA to work in my group and ?general support funding? for the group. Again, an I.P. deal is at the heart of the agreement . This has resulted in a demonstration of driverless technology in the UK See www.robotcar.org.uk
Start Year 2010
 
Title "Dense Stereo" 
Description William Maddern and Paul Newman "Dense Stereo" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet. 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed No
Impact William Maddern and Paul Newman "Dense Stereo" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet.
 
Title "Dense disparity estimation for stereo vision" 
Description Pedro Pinies, Lina Paz and Paul Newman "Dense disparity estimation for stereo vision" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet. 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed No
Impact Pedro Pinies, Lina Paz and Paul Newman "Dense disparity estimation for stereo vision" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet.
 
Title "Dense disparity estimation using laser and stereo vision" 
Description Pedro Pinies, Lina Paz and Paul Newman "Dense disparity estimation using laser and stereo vision" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet. 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed No
Impact Pedro Pinies, Lina Paz and Paul Newman "Dense disparity estimation using laser and stereo vision" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet.
 
Title "Label Projection from Semantic Map Priors" 
Description Dan Barnes, William Maddern and Ingmar Posner "Label Projection from Semantic Map Priors" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet. 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed No
Impact Dan Barnes, William Maddern and Ingmar Posner "Label Projection from Semantic Map Priors" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet.
 
Title "Laser Simulation in virtual environments" 
Description Daniel Wilde and Ingmar Posner "Laser Simulation in virtual environments" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet. 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed No
Impact Daniel Wilde and Ingmar Posner "Laser Simulation in virtual environments" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet.
 
Title "NABU Man Portable Navigation and Survey Scanner" 
Description Asa Eckert-Erdheim, Scott Terry, Christopher Prahacs and Paul Newman "NABU Man Portable Navigation and Survey Scanner" 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed Yes
Impact Asa Eckert-Erdheim, Scott Terry, Christopher Prahacs and Paul Newman "NABU Man Portable Navigation and Survey Scanner"
 
Title "NABU4 Design" 
Description Chris Prahacs and Paul Newman "NABU4 Design" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet. 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed No
Impact Chris Prahacs and Paul Newman "NABU4 Design" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet.
 
Title "Parsing Traffic Lights" 
Description Dan Barnes, William Maddern and Ingmar Posner "Parsing Traffic Lights" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet. 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed No
Impact Dan Barnes, William Maddern and Ingmar Posner "Parsing Traffic Lights" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet.
 
Title "Patch-based localisation technique using camera images" 
Description Chris Linegar and Paul Newman "Patch-based localisation technique using camera images" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet. 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed No
Impact Chris Linegar and Paul Newman "Patch-based localisation technique using camera images" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet.
 
Title "Planning in the Presence of Dynamic Obstacles" 
Description Geoff Hester, Ingmar Posner and Paul Newman "Planning in the Presence of Dynamic Obstacles" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet. 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed No
Impact Geoff Hester, Ingmar Posner and Paul Newman "Planning in the Presence of Dynamic Obstacles" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet.
 
Title "Route segmentation and Tracking with Cameras" 
Description Lina Paz, Pedro Pinies, and Paul Newman "Route segmentation and Tracking with Cameras" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet. 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed Yes
Impact Lina Paz, Pedro Pinies, and Paul Newman "Route segmentation and Tracking with Cameras" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet.
 
Title "Scenario Planner - a software tool for creating simulation scenarios for robot environments" 
Description Jonathan Attias and Paul Newman "Scenario Planner - a software tool for creating simulation scenarios for robot environments" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet. 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed No
Impact Jonathan Attias and Paul Newman "Scenario Planner - a software tool for creating simulation scenarios for robot environments" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet.
 
Title "TrackLib 1.0" 
Description Akshay Morye, Dominic Wang, Chi Tong and Ingmar Posner "TrackLib 1.0" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet. 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed No
Impact Akshay Morye, Dominic Wang, Chi Tong and Ingmar Posner "TrackLib 1.0" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet.
 
Title "TrackLib 1.0" 
Description Akshay Morye, Dominic Wang, Chi Tong and Ingmar Posner "TrackLib 1.0" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet. 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed No
Impact Akshay Morye, Dominic Wang, Chi Tong and Ingmar Posner "TrackLib 1.0" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet.
 
Title "Visual Inertial Odometry" 
Description Winston Churchill and Paul Newman "Visual Inertial Odometry" (an upgrade package to oVo) Not registered yet. Not licensed yet. 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed No
Impact Winston Churchill and Paul Newman "Visual Inertial Odometry" (an upgrade package to oVo) Not registered yet. Not licensed yet.
 
Title "Vote 3D 2.0" 
Description Dominic Wang, Ingmar Posner and Paul Newman "Vote 3D 2.0" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet. 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed No
Impact Dominic Wang, Ingmar Posner and Paul Newman "Vote 3D 2.0" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet.
 
Title 3D to 2D label projection 
Description Daniel Wilde and Ingmar Posner "3D to 2D label projection" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed No
Impact Daniel Wilde and Ingmar Posner "3D to 2D label projection" Not registered yet. Not licensed yet
 
Title A Variational Approach to Online Road and Path Segmentation with Monocular Vision 
Description Lina Paz, Pedro Pinies and Paul Newman "A Variational Approach to Online Road and Path Segmentation with Monocular Vision" 
IP Reference  
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted 2015
Licensed Yes
Impact Lina Paz, Pedro Pinies and Paul Newman "A Variational Approach to Online Road and Path Segmentation with Monocular Vision"
 
Title BORG2 
Description Pedro Pinies, Lina Paz, Michael Tanner and Paul Newman "BORG2" Patent not published yet. Licensed. 
IP Reference  
Protection Patent granted
Year Protection Granted
Licensed Yes
Impact Pedro Pinies, Lina Paz, Michael Tanner and Paul Newman "BORG2" Patent not published yet. Licensed.
 
Title Borg cube 
Description Lina Paz, Pedro Pinnies, Michael Tanner, and Paul Newman "Borg cube" 
IP Reference  
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted 2016
Licensed Yes
Impact Lina Paz, Pedro Pinnies, Michael Tanner, and Paul Newman "Borg cube"
 
Title Clock Synchronisation / TICSync 
Description Paul Newman and Alastair Harrison "Clock Synchronisation / TICSync 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed Yes
Impact Paul Newman and Alastair Harrison "Clock Synchronisation / TICSync
 
Title Deep Image-based Detection 
Description Deep Image-based Detection 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted 2016
Licensed Yes
Impact Deep Image-based Detection
 
Title Dense Laser Stereo 
Description Dense Laser Stereo 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted 2016
Licensed Yes
Impact Dense Laser Stereo
 
Title Distraction suppression 
Description Paul Newman, Colin McManus and Ben Davis "Distraction suppression 
IP Reference  
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted 2014
Licensed Yes
Impact Paul Newman, Colin McManus and Ben Davis "Distraction suppression
 
Title Dub4 
Description Dub4 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted 2016
Licensed Yes
Impact Dub4
 
Title EBN Experience Based Life Long Navigation 
Description Paul Newman and Winston Churchill "EBN Experience Based Life Long Navigation" 
IP Reference  
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted 2013
Licensed Yes
Impact Paul Newman and Winston Churchill "EBN Experience Based Life Long Navigation"
 
Title Extrinsic Calibration of Imaging Sensing Devices And 2D Lidars Mounted On Transportable Apparatus 
Description Paul Newman and Ashley Napier "Extrinsic Calibration of Imaging Sensing Devices And 2D Lidars Mounted On Transportable Apparatus" 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed Yes
Impact Paul Newman and Ashley Napier "Extrinsic Calibration of Imaging Sensing Devices And 2D Lidars Mounted On Transportable Apparatus"
 
Title Fast Calibration For LidarS 
Description Paul Newman, Alastair Harrison and William Maddern "Fast Calibration For LidarS" 
IP Reference  
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted 2012
Licensed Yes
Impact Paul Newman, Alastair Harrison and William Maddern "Fast Calibration For LidarS"
 
Title Generating Navigation Data 
Description Paul Newman and Winston Churchill "Generating Navigation Data" 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed Yes
Impact Paul Newman and Winston Churchill "Generating Navigation Data"
 
Title Leveraging Experience for Large-Scale LIDAR Localisation in Changing Cities 
Description William Maddern, Geoff Pascoe, and Paul Newman "Leveraging Experience for Large-Scale LIDAR Localisation in Changing Cities" 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed Yes
Impact William Maddern, Geoff Pascoe, and Paul Newman "Leveraging Experience for Large-Scale LIDAR Localisation in Changing Cities"
 
Title Lidar Point Cloud 
Description Paul Newman and Ian Baldwin "Lidar Point Cloud" 
IP Reference  
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted 2016
Licensed Yes
Impact Paul Newman and Ian Baldwin "Lidar Point Cloud"
 
Title Localising Portable Apparatus 
Description Paul Newman, Geoff Pascoe, Will Maddern and Alex Stewart "Localising Portable Apparatus 
IP Reference  
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted 2015
Licensed Yes
Impact Paul Newman, Geoff Pascoe, Will Maddern and Alex Stewart "Localising Portable Apparatus
 
Title Monocular Camera Localisation Using Prior Point Clouds 
Description Paul Newman and Alex Stewart "Monocular Camera Localisation Using Prior Point Clouds" 
IP Reference  
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted 2012
Licensed Yes
Impact Paul Newman and Alex Stewart "Monocular Camera Localisation Using Prior Point Clouds"
 
Title OvO 
Description Visual Odometry System licensed for Mars Mission by ESA 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted 2011
Licensed Yes
Impact Visual Odometry System licensed for Mars Mission by ESA
 
Title Pain of the Plain Plane - Using Priors in Dense Reconstruction 
Description Lina Paz and Pinies PN "Pain of the Plain Plane - Using Priors in Dense Reconstruction" 
IP Reference  
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted 2015
Licensed Yes
Impact Lina Paz and Pinies PN "Pain of the Plain Plane - Using Priors in Dense Reconstruction"
 
Title Parsing Traffic Lights Version 2 
Description Parsing Traffic Lights Version 2 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted 2016
Licensed Yes
Impact Parsing Traffic Lights Version 2
 
Title Path Discovery using Random Forests and Dense Stereo 
Description Path Discovery using Random Forests and Dense Stereo 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted 2016
Licensed Yes
Impact Path Discovery using Random Forests and Dense Stereo
 
Title Real-time Remote State Visualisation 
Description Real-time Remote State Visualisation 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted 2016
Licensed Yes
Impact Real-time Remote State Visualisation
 
Title Scene Prior Builder v2 
Description Scene Prior Builder v2 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted 2016
Licensed Yes
Impact Scene Prior Builder v2
 
Title Semantic Label Projection v2 
Description Semantic Label Projection v2 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted 2016
Licensed Yes
Impact Semantic Label Projection v2
 
Title Semi-supervised Training for deep semantic Segmentation 
Description Semi-supervised Training for deep semantic Segmentation 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted 2016
Licensed Yes
Impact Semi-supervised Training for deep semantic Segmentation
 
Title Use of Synthetic Overhead Images For Vehicle Localisation 
Description Paul Newman and Ashley Napier "Use of Synthetic Overhead Images For Vehicle Localisation" 
IP Reference  
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted 2012
Licensed Yes
Impact Paul Newman and Ashley Napier "Use of Synthetic Overhead Images For Vehicle Localisation"
 
Title Vehicle Localisation 
Description Paul Newman, William Maddern, Alex Stewart, Colin McManus, Winston Churchill "Vehicle Localisation" 
IP Reference  
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted 2015
Licensed Yes
Impact Paul Newman, William Maddern, Alex Stewart, Colin McManus, Winston Churchill "Vehicle Localisation"
 
Title Vehicle Localisation with 2D Laser Scanner And 3D Prior Scans 
Description Paul Newman and Ian Baldwin "Vehicle Localisation with 2D Laser Scanner And 3D Prior Scans" 
IP Reference  
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted 2012
Licensed Yes
Impact Paul Newman and Ian Baldwin "Vehicle Localisation with 2D Laser Scanner And 3D Prior Scans"
 
Title Vehicle Localisation with 2D Pushbroom Lasers 
Description Paul Newman and Ian Baldwin "Vehicle Localisation with 2D Pushbroom Lasers" 
IP Reference  
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted 2013
Licensed Yes
Impact Paul Newman and Ian Baldwin "Vehicle Localisation with 2D Pushbroom Lasers"
 
Title Visual Odometry (OVO software) 
Description Paul Newman and Winston Chruchill "Visual Odometry (OVO software)" 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted
Licensed Yes
Impact Paul Newman and Winston Chruchill "Visual Odometry (OVO software)"
 
Title Vote3Deep 
Description Vote3Deep 
IP Reference  
Protection Copyrighted (e.g. software)
Year Protection Granted 2016
Licensed Yes
Impact Vote3Deep
 
Title Work Smart not Hard - Path Memory for Intelligent Map Management 
Description Paul Newman, Chris Linegar, and Winston Churchill "Work Smart not Hard - Path Memory for Intelligent Map Management" 
IP Reference  
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted 2014
Licensed Yes
Impact Paul Newman, Chris Linegar, and Winston Churchill "Work Smart not Hard - Path Memory for Intelligent Map Management"
 
Company Name Oxbotica 
Description Oxbotica is a spin-out from Oxford University's internationally acclaimed Mobile Robotics Group. We specialise in mobile autonomy, navigation and perception, and draw on our heritage of world leading research into autonomous robotics. Our solutions allow robots, vehicles, machinery and people to precisely map, navigate and actively interact with their surroundings, delivering new capability and precision to a wide range of applications. Our 3D imaging and localisation solutions operate indoors and outdoors and are suitable for use in applications ranging from hand held survey devices to autonomous vehicles. Oxbotica was founded by Prof. Ingmar Posner and Prof. Paul Newman - leaders of Oxford University's Mobile Robotics Group (MRG). MRG has an outstanding reputation for innovation and industrial collaborations (mrg.robots.ox.ac.uk). It has licensed navigation software for use on Mars rovers, developed the UK's first self-driving car, and has been a key and influential innovator in the area of Robotics and Autonomous Systems. 
Year Established 2014 
Impact Oxbotica will leverage the innovative and world leading outputs of the UK's premier mobile robotics group, enabling rapid commercialisation with our industry partners and further application of spin-off technologies.
Website http://www.oxbotica.com/
 
Description Atacama Mars Rover Field Trial Blog 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Pending.

Pending
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://www.scisys.co.uk/where-we-work/space/atacama-field-trial-2014-blog.html
 
Description BBC News Article - Oxford's robots and the funding of innovation 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact Interview with BBC News Tech corespondent for an article discussing "Oxford's robots and the funding of innovation"

Increase in contact from potential students and enquiries regarding industry partnerships.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-29877706
 
Description BBC Radio 4 Interview - The Today Programme 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Go to 1:34:14 for Paul's interview on the Today Programme:
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08hl5rt
 
Description EPSRC Robotics, Automation & Artificial Intelligence (RAAI) Theme Day 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Supporters
Results and Impact EPSRC are undertaking a review of our robotics, automation and artificial intelligence portfolios of relevance to Robotics and Autonomous Systems (RAS) in order to evaluate the quality and importance of EPSRC's portfolio of research and training in the area. To facilitate this we are hosting a Theme Day on the 31st January 2017 in Central London.

The Theme Day will involve poster presentations from holders of current and recent related grants from across the EPSRC portfolio. A panel of internationally leading experts chaired by Prof David Hogg will use the posters and discussions with attendees to draw conclusions about the portfolio as a whole. The outcomes of the review will be used to inform future strategy in the area of RAAI and will not impact on future funding decisions at a PI level.

The Theme day will be an opportunity for PIs to present their research to the review panel. The day will also give attendees an opportunity to view work of relevance to RAAI from across the EPSRC portfolio and to network with leaders in the area from across the UK.

As a holder of such a related grant(s) (details below) we would like to invite you to attend the event.

Related Grant(s): EP/I005021/1, EP/J012017/1, EP/M019918/1
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description IET Thought Leadership Debate 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Debate and networking event afterwards

Dissemination of nascent information
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description IET Young Professionals Event 2014: Robotics Science for Autonomous Vehicles 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This talk was designed to inspire young engineers and promote discussion amongst the next generation about the challenges ahead for robotics. The talk covered many areas of robotics and the problems we have solved and those that are set to vex the next generation of engineers.

Request for further participation
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://tv.theiet.org/channels/news/19815.cfm
 
Description Michael Tanner (PhD student) judged the "regionals" of Vex Robotics competition (primarily a STEM-outreach program) hosted at Stowe School 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact From: Michael Tanner
Subject: Vex Robotics Competition
Date: 6 February 2017 at 12:59:07 GMT
To: Paul Newman , Ingmar Posner

[This is purely an FYI/feel-good email. No action required.]

Paul/Ingmar,

Last week I took a day off to judge the "regionals" of Vex Robotics competition (primarily a STEM-outreach program) hosted at Stowe School
http://www.vexrobotics.com/vexedr/competition/

I thoroughly enjoyed the event and was fascinated at the creative designs students developed for this year's challenge. Here is a YouTube video showing the types of robots students develop:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FCck9_vk8H4

The students were quite diverse (boys/girls, 10 - 17 years old, hail from UK/US/China, etc.), but they all shared a deep passion regarding their respective robot designs. The level of knowledge some of the students demonstrated was impressive (e.g., describing the chemical/material property trade-offs between various plastics included in their designs). Once the students learned I was studying robotics at Oxford, I was inuidated with questions.

I went home and immeditally ordered one of Vex Robotics' cheaper toy robotics kits (http://www.vexrobotics.com/vexiq) for my daughters to play with at home.

--
Michael Tanner
Oxford Robotics Institute
Department of Engineering Science
University of Oxford
Comm +44 7514 119187
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://www.vexrobotics.com/vexedr/competition/
 
Description Motoring of the Future Inquiry, House of Commons 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Member of a panel giving evidence to inquiry panel of MP's

Direct interaction with policy makers
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/transport-committee/inqui...
 
Description RSS 2014 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact Attendance at RSS at Berkeley, USA

Pending
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://rll.berkeley.edu/RSS2014/
 
Description Reception to Celebrate British Science, 10 Downing Street 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Attendance at an evening reception to celebrate British Science - hosted by the Prime Minister David Cameron.

Networking contacts made in various industries.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description Safe and Secure Internet of Things, House of Lords 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Gave a talk on driverless cars

Dissemination of technology and engagement with influential policy makers
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description Shell Eco-Marathon June / July 2016 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Shell Eco-marathon challenges student teams around the world to design, build, test and drive ultra-energy-efficient vehicles.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016,2017
URL https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kU7OYLgnlkM
 
Description Talk at AHRC Research Network Workshop 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact The action-based alternative to 3D coordinate-frame representation was the main topic of our video meetings throughout 2016, and of our workshop at St John's College, Oxford, in January 2017. This workshop brought together experts from diverse disciplines for a focussed multidisciplinary discussion across three days, testing the action-based hypothesis by assessing its philosophical, computational and neuroscientific consequences. You can see the final discussion of the workshop here. As well as discussions led by Andrew and me, the workshop featured talks by:
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL https://jamesstazicker.com/research/the-action-based-brain/
 
Description The Jenkin Lecture: "The Oxford RobotCar" - University of Oxford Engineering Dept. Alumni Day 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact 180 current and former members of the Engineering Department attended the Jenkin Lecture during the Alumni weekend, which showcased the exciting work done by the Department and stimulated much discussion.

Pending
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://www.eng.ox.ac.uk/about/news/the-2014-alumni-weekend-a-first-for-the-department
 
Description Venturefest Oxford 2014 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Demonstrated RobotCar and presented MRG team plus press interviews.

Promotion of MRG.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://www.venturefestoxford.com/