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Title: Robotic vehicle

A robotic vehicle (10) for travel through an enclosed or partially enclosed conduit or pipe including vertical and/or horizontal conduit or pipe. The robotic vehicle (10) comprises forward and rear housings (32 and 12) each provided with a surface engaging mechanism for selectively engaging the walls of the conduit through which the vehicle is travelling, whereby the housings (32 and 12) are selectively held in a stationary position within the conduit. The vehicle (10) also includes at least three selectively extendable members (46), each of which defines a cavity (56) therein. The forward end portion (50) of each extendable member (46) is secured to the forward housing (32) and the rear end portion (48) of each housing is secured to the rear housing (12). Each of the extendable members (46) is independently extendable from a retracted position to an extended position upon the injection of a gas under pressure into the cavity (56) of the extendable member such that the distance between the forward housing (32 ) and the rear housing (12) can be selectively increased. Further, each of the extendable members (46) is independently retractable from the extended position to the retracted position upon the application of a vacuummore » to the cavity (56) of the extendable member (46) such that the distance between the forward housing (32) and the rear housing (12) can be selectively decreased.« less
Inventors:
 [1]
  1. (Oak Ridge, TN)
Issue Date:
OSTI Identifier:
870331
Assignee:
Martin Marietta Energy Systems, Inc. (Oak Ridge, TN) ORNL
Patent Number(s):
US 5497707
Contract Number:
AC05-84OR21400
Research Org:
LOCKHEED MARTIN ENRGY SYST INC
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
robotic; vehicle; 10; travel; enclosed; partially; conduit; pipe; including; vertical; horizontal; comprises; forward; rear; housings; 32; 12; provided; surface; engaging; mechanism; selectively; walls; travelling; whereby; held; stationary; position; extendable; 46; defines; cavity; 56; therein; portion; 50; secured; housing; 48; independently; retracted; extended; injection; gas; pressure; distance; increased; retractable; application; vacuum; decreased; rear housing; surface engaging; stationary position; selectively engaging; retracted position; extended position; robotic vehicle; rear housings; pipe including; closed conduit; selectively held; selectively extendable; comprises forward; partially enclosed; horizontal conduit; including vertical; enclosed conduit; engaging mechanism; /104/

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