Robots displayed at open house

January 27, 2005, vol. 32, no. 2
By Marianne Meadahl

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Autonomous robots, computerized special effects, and a vehicle capable of delivering emergency communications anywhere in the province are just some examples of innovative ideas taking shape in SFU's faculty of applied sciences.

They'll all be on display at the faculty's open house on Feb. 5 from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. in the applied sciences building on the Burnaby campus.

The event will showcase the faculty's six schools, which include communication, computing science, engineering science, kinesiology, interactive arts and technology (housed at SFU's Surrey campus) and resource and environmental management. It will feature research projects as well as offer hands-on mini projects.

Highlights will include an animation theatre, featuring short, animated movies created by fourth-year computer animation students.

Visitors can also learn the basic concepts of computer graphics by modelling their names with 3D software, or watch a demonstration of the new emergency communication vehicle, designed and developed by members of the faculty's telematics lab to provide mobile assistance to remote communities during a disaster.

Research being carried out in the faculty's year-old autonomy lab will also be featured.
The lab's goal is to create more life-like machines, designed with increased autonomy and flexibility.

A session with lab director Richard Vaughan will highlight some of the animal-inspired robot systems he built before coming to SFU, including a duck-herding robot sheep dog.
Alumni will also be on hand to talk about opportunities for applied sciences students after graduation.

Everyone is welcome. To register online (and enter a draw for an ipod) or for further details check out the faculty's website at

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