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Move over Spot. There’s a new robo-dog on the block — and it’s waterproof

ANYmal C Legged Robot – The Next Step in Robotic Industrial Inspection

ANYbotics, the Swiss robotics company behind the four-legged, oil rig-inspecting ANYmal robot, has released its latest autonomous, legged robot. And it’s boasting a shiny new red coat of paint and a plethora of other under-the-hood improvements.

Called ANYmal C, the new robot was unveiled at the World Robot Conference in Beijing. It builds on the company’s decade-long history of building quadruped robots, as well as its past few years’ worth of putting them through their paces in a broad range of environments. While it looks similar to its immediate predecessor, the robot has been entirely redesigned from scratch to improve its overall performance and integrate the latest technologies.

“ANYmal C was completely redesigned with the purpose of getting legged robots into real-world applications,” Dr. Christian Gehring, CTO and co-founder of ANYbotics, told Digital Trends. “The powerful new actuations system can carry the robot over steep, industrial-grade stairs, and is designed to be maintenance-free for an extended period of time. ANYmal C is [also] packed with a range of new sensors, such as all-around perception for navigation and obstacle avoidance, wide-angle cameras for teleoperation, and optional RTK GPS for outdoor navigation.”

The robot is impressively rugged and both water- and dust-proof, ensuring its suitability for work in less robot-friendly conditions. It comes with a docking station for autonomous recharging.

“ANYmal C [was] primarily developed to perform autonomous routine inspections in industrial environments,” Gehring said. “In addition to this exciting field, we continue to explore a range of other applications. To this end, we closely collaborate with engineering and research partners, and offer an easy expandability of ANYmal C … . For example, ANYmal C can be equipped with a NVIDIA Jetson Xavier graphics card for learning-based applications.”

Between ANYmal, the Spot robot from Boston Dynamics, and one or two budding upstarts, the field of dog-inspired robots is surprisingly crowded these days. It’s no wonder that companies are having to release new versions of their metallic mutts in order to stay on the cutting edge. Given ANYmal’s already impressive deployment of its quadruped robots, we’re excited to see what comes out of its next-gen version. We’re not likely to be kept waiting long to find out.

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