Registered: December 2011
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On March 11, 2011, at approximately 2:46pm JST, Japan was hit by a magnitude 9.0 earthquake. This was one of the biggest earthquakes ever recorded in recent history. The main earthquake was preceded by many foreshocks and aftershocks that ranged between magnitudes of 4.5 to 7.4. The devastation left in the wake was like nothing ever seen or recorded in recent history. The earthquake also created a tsunami that measured to 40.5 meters (133 ft) high. To make matters worse, the tsunami critically damaged nuclear reactors at Fukushima after it made land fall. The reactors were so critically damaged that at least three of the reactors reached the point of a nuclear meltdown. After data was collected on exactly what the status was on each of the reactors, it became evident that this was the worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl Disaster in 1986. The aftermath of this earthquake caused for nations around the world to reevaluate their nuclear reactors and nuclear programs. Many nations around the world have vowed to reduce the number of their active nuclear reactors and also to make sure that they are strong enough to withstand a natural disaster of such magnitudes.
Given the events of March 11, a similar scenario was created where a nuclear reactor (red beacon) had not been properly shut down and a trapped worker (green beacon) was still inside a building. Given the supplies and tools, a robot was created which would be able to turn off an active nuclear reactor and save a trapped worker. The primary goals set were, to create a light weight robot that could also complete the task at hand in the shortest amount of time. The robot being build also had to be practical, just in case it was to be made into an actual full sized robot that was needed to carry out the task given in this project. Upon the completion of the robot it consisted of infrared detector eyes and a perfectly functional arm. The robot was able to detect, distinguish and shut down the two different infrared beacons used due to the programming that was done on it.
This Ecological/Engineering project was done to create an awareness of the potential threat of a nuclear disaster and also to have young minds think of feasible solutions to this problem with the least amount of human intervention into these highly dangerous situations/locations. By undertaking this project I learnt that there are various ways of handing critical situations with the help of robots and thereby avoiding the potential harm to human beings and the environment. With the growth in technology over the recent years, humanity is evermore closer in re-achieving the ecological stability with the use of its modern technology.