New spin-out targets new frontiers of robotic technology

A new spin-out from the Department of Engineering Science and Isis Innovation will target new opportunities in robotics and autonomous systems. The firm, Oxbotica, has been founded by Professor Ingmar Posner and Professor Paul Newman - leaders of the Department's internationally acclaimed Oxford Mobile Robotics Group (MRG).

Current MRG projects include robotic survey systems for roads and railways, low-speed driverless pods for urban transport, the RobotCar autonomous vehicle, and robotic rovers for use on Mars. Isis Innovation, the University’s technology commercialisation company, has announced the formation of the company which will commercialise MRG’s robotics and autonomous systems technologies.

Executive Director of Isis Innovation, Linda Naylor said: “Robotic technology has the potential to transform the fabric of our everyday lives and Oxbotica will be a key part of this.”

Pictured on the left is Professor Paul Newman, and on the right is Profesor Ingmar Posner.

Professor Ingmar Posner, from the Department, said: “We believe that Oxford University’s robotics expertise can transform a wide spectrum of application domains. Our intended markets range from devices that survey our roads, buildings and chemical plants to autonomous systems for warehouse logistics and, of course, autonomous driving.”

The Department's BP Professor of Information Engineering, Paul Newman added: “Transport remains an important application for robotic technology but we are thinking bigger than any single application. In collaboration with partners, we can help to realise the Government’s vision of robotics as one of the UK’s ‘Eight Great Technologies’.”

The company will be led by Dr Graeme Smith, an automotive engineering executive with extensive experience in developing autonomous vehicle technology. Dr Smith said: “Oxbotica will manage and expand the extensive and rapidly growing intellectual property portfolio created by MRG to realise the tremendous market potential of robotics and autonomous systems in the UK and globally.”

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