The SPRINT Robotics Collaborative aims to achieve field use of robotics for inspection and maintenance of capital intensive infrastructure assets on a very large scale within the next ten years. Using robotics in the domain of technical inspection and maintenance of capital intensive infrastructure is of vital importance because of the urgency to minimize the impact on safety and the environment. In addition, robotic inspection and maintenance may reduce shutdown times, preventing human entry of vessels and other equipment, as well as reduction of costs related to services required to enable human entry.
During the past decade robotic technology has been developed in many areas albeit that much of the technology is still in the stage of prototype development and demonstrations rather than proven in practice and therefore market mature. Consequently, application specific development of the technology is needed. In order to utilize robotics solutions as a competitive service we need to accelerate business development and market innovation. Currently, market implementation and acceptance of a novel technology is a drawn out process. Given the vast amount of effort which is worldwide invested on the development and implementation of robotic technology, we believe that acceleration of the development process can be accomplished in order to achieve robotic inspection and maintenance services.