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French Firefighting Robot Colossus Helped Save Burning Notre Dame Cathedral

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Thanks to the collective strength of 400 men and a powerful firefighting robot called Colossus, much of the Notre Dame Cathedral has been saved and did not fall into deep ruin.

On the evening of Monday, April 15, the roof of the Notre Dame Cathedral caught fire while undergoing renovation and restoration. The fire lasted for 15 hours and was eventually put out, but the cathedral sustained serious damage. Thankfully, no one died, although one firefighter and two police officers were injured.

The following day, Tuesday, April 16, as images of the burnt cathedral appeared online, experts began to discuss how the Notre Dame would be restored to its beauty. French billionaires have already pledged at least $680 million to rebuild the cathedral.

How French Fighting Robot Helped Save Burning Notre Dame Cathedral

Putting out the blazing fire in the Notre Dame Cathedral presented some difficult challenges for firefighters. Gregg Favre, a public safety official who resided in the United States and was not present in the Paris fire, explained on Twitter that the inside of the cathedral is difficult to hose.

"The primary option is large 2.5 inches fire hoses," tweeted Favre.

He explained that these are heavy fire hoses and quite difficult to maneuver. What's more, against the Notre Dame fire, the hoses are largely ineffective.

When the Notre Dame Cathedral's spire was about to collapse, the firefighters sent in Colossus, a 1,100-pound remote-controlled firefighting robot, to save the day. Colossus blasted the nave with water, effectively lowering the temperature of the glass-filled room of the cathedral.

What Are The Specifications Of Colossus?

Colossus has been designed to endure brutal conditions, operate a fire hose, and hold heavy tools into a dangerous environment. The robot has also been engineered to carry wounded people out if there are any. The best thing about Colossus is that it can be maneuvered even from nearly 1,000 feet away, and its design allows it to be used for different tasks.

Colossus is about 5.25 feet long, 2.5 feet wide, and at least 2.5 feet tall. The robot is waterproof, fire-resistant, and has two electric motors powered by six lithium-ion batteries, with electromagnetic brakes. Controls for Colossus look like different forms of video game controllers.

The robot, which was created by the company Shark Robotics, can only move at 2.2 mph, but it can climb over anything and carry more than 1,200 pounds of weight. It was first introduced in 2017.

Aside from Colossus, drones also helped firefighters position their hoses to contain the blaze. Such drones were a pair of Chinese-manufactured commercial drones called the Mavic Pro and Matrice M210, which were both made by DJI Technology.

How Will The Notre Dame Cathedral Be Restored?

Reports say a popular video game can help restore the Notre Dame Cathedral. Artist Caroline Miousse has worked on the game known as Assassin's Creed and she has captured intricate details of both the interior and exterior of the cathedral.

Engineers could use the details in this video game and assess the church's structural integrity. Once they complete the needed research, they can design a suitable roof.

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