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£6.25m to create IKEA style robots

A new £6.25m research project is aiming to create 'IKEA kit' robots, to bring automation into people’s homes, just like the product sold by the Swedish furniture chain. 

Researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) are developing desk-top programmes that could allow a fully functioning customised robot to be assembled and ready for action within 24 hours.

The key to the process is 3-D printing and a platform that will enable people to choose from a ‘library’ of robot designs.

Team leader Professor Daniela Rus, from MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab (CSAIL), has great hopes for the new technology, she said: ‘We believe that it has the potential to transform manufacturing and to democratise access to robots.’

The five year project is being funded by the US National Science Foundation

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