Knightscope, a startup company that is based in Mountain View, California, has been responsible with designing, building and testing of the K5 robot since 2013. So far, the company has built seven robots and plans to deploy four of them towards the end of the year. The robots are designed to be sensitive to any anomalous behavior which it reports back to a remote security center.
The Knightscope K5 robot security guards are 5ft tall robots that come with GPS, lasers, and heat-detecting technology. They are designed to function without any human manipulation and are built with surveillance cameras and sensors, odor detectors, thermal imaging system, and scanners which can read an impressive number of 300 car registration plates every single minute. When on a patrolling duty, it uses lasers to calculate the distance and also relies on its GPS system.
Though the K5 may look friendly and can be the next featured attraction in an amusement park since it carries no weapons, people are warned not to mess with it. If someone walks in front of it, it will stop abruptly. If it feels like it's being detained, the robot's built-in alarm will begin to chirp like a warning signal while an alert is being sent to a remote monitoring center. When someone continues to bother it, the K5 robot gives out an ear-piercing alarm, sending out an alert that will prompt the operator to check its surrounding through a browser-based software. The operator will then talk to anyone who could be harassing the robot.
The K5 robot is also built with a button that is nestled near the top of its head. This button can be pressed down by anyone who needs some help.
There is still a lot of work that needs to be done with the Knightscope K5 robots. One of these is proving how the robots can be effective over time wherein people would have to feel comfortable when they are around.
Moreover, the robots still have to work on balancing themselves. Some people noticed that one robot had toppled over the edge of the sidewalk which in turn needed a few people to pull it upright.
The K5 robot from Knightscope which resembles a modern version of Dalek is not perceived to replace human security patrols any time soon. At least for now, the robot can be worthwhile in keeping people out of harm's way.
"I believe robots are the perfect tools to handle the monotonous and sometimes dangerous work in order to free up humans to more judiciously address activities requiring higher-level thinking, hands-on encounters or tactical planning," said Knightscope in a blog post.