New Delhi (Sputnik) — Indian scientists have developed a breakthrough technology for a radioactive environment which will replace the human intervention for testing the eddy current inside nuclear power plants.
The robot manipulator was developed by scientists from the Center for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (CAIR), Bengaluru, the state-owned Defense Research and Development Organization's (DRDO) premier research laboratory. Last month the DRDO transferred the technology to the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL).
"The ECT Robot Manipulator system is a remotely controlled 5 Degree of Freedom (5-DoF) robotic system used for positioning the ECT probe below the steam generator tube, which has to be inspected. The system has been designed with a unique 2 DOF base for automatic calibration. The probe holder is equipped with a camera for automatic visual position correction to compensate for mechanical errors in the system," DRDO said in a statement.
Any defects or cracks inside the tubes directly impact the reliability and performance of the plants and is also dangerous from the point of view of human safety. Many countries have already started using robot manipulators in place of human inspection for steam generator tubes, but Indian plants were still dependent on human resources for such inspections.