DARPA FLA Program Wraps Up Test #1: Warehouse

The first test event for DARPA's Fast Lightweight Autonomy program, Test #1: Warehouse, is complete. The NERVE Center is providing test and evaluation services for FLA, facilitating test events that push the autonomous capabilities of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). Watch a time lapse video of the Warehouse test course being built here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HlYujvmQdrU

Valkyrie has landed at the NERVE Center!

On Wednesday, April 6, 2016, NASA delivered their R5 Valkyrie robot to the NERVE Center. Now with the robot in place at NERVE, researchers from UMass Lowell and Northeastern University are hard at work to teach Valkyrie how to walk, manipulate objects, and understand the world around her. Check out a time lapse of the installation here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=68WA4mdOQd8

The New England Robotics Validation and Experimentation (NERVE) Center at the University of Massachusetts Lowell is a dedicated research, testing, and training facility. The mission of the NERVE Center is to improve the development of robotic systems by both academic researchers and corporations by facilitating evaluation throughout the design cycle.


The NERVE Center houses replicas of the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s (NIST) Standard Test Methods for Robots, water test areas designed in collaboration with the Army, an indoor rain area, NERVE-specific apparatuses, and the ability to simulate a variety of operational scenarios and experiment set-ups. The indoor arenas allow for year-round testing of robot systems with water, sand, and other features difficult to maintain outdoors in New England.┬áNine thousand square feet is dedicated to test courses and apparatuses. Each course is outfitted with a video recording system to capture robot testing sessions throughout the entire facility. NERVE Center employees are available to aid with testing and adjust apparatus settings.


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NERVE Center's brochure

The center is conducting research to continue the development of standard methods for evaluating robots. For example, there are few validation methods that have been developed for fully autonomous robot systems, an area with a great deal of current research and development. Feedback on new metrics is solicited from NERVE Center members.



UMass Lowell NERVE Center, 1001 Pawtucket Boulevard, Lowell, MA 01854
For more information, please contact NERVE@cs.uml.edu or call 978-934-6600