Automation Technology Laboratory, Helsinki University of Technology
The Automation Technology Laboratory was a part of the Helsinki University of Technology’s Department of Automation and Systems Technology, but in 2008 after a series of changes in organization, the lab now exists as three research groups that are part of Aalto University School of Electrical Engineering’s Department of Automation and Systems Technology.
The Automation Technology Lab has been working in the field of automation technology, which includes robotics, mechatronics, and control of industrial processes. Currently the lab is not an independent profit center but is made up of several research groups under the Department of Automation and Systems Technology, but still keeps its role as an umbrella for several activities. The Automation Technology Laboratory is a top caliber research and teaching facility in the field of automation technology and robotics, with a wide array of robotics test bed equipment, special tools, and pilot processes.
Among the groups that were formed under the Automation Technology Laboratory is the GIM, short for Generic Intelligent Machines Research, whose focus is geared towards research and doctoral education. Among the robots that GIM has developed and are currently active is the RoseRunner robot, a four wheeled mobile robot with DC drives with LiPo batteries and three onboard computers, laser scanner, various sensors, aluminum chassis, and custom-made electronics. This robot took part in the recent 2012 Field Robot Event in Venlo, Netherlands and took second place in the World Championship competition.
Under one of its branches, the Autonomous Systems, they were also able to devise an AutoCrop in an effort to revolutionize farming in Finland. They aim to have automated machines till and harvest fields, replacing tractors or machines that are manually operated by humans. This started in 2007 and is in collaboration with the University of Helsinki and TKK Automation Technology, and is funded by the Academy of Finland.