These Cute Robots Fix Problems In Nuclear Reactors

By Chris Mills on at

Unsurprisingly, humans and nuclear reactors don’t mix well. So what do you do when you have to maintain the inside of an experimental fusion reactor? Deploy Wall-E’s more competent cousin, of course.

Tom Scott took a look at the maintenance machines that do the repairs inside the UK’s nuclear fusion research reactor. They’re not autonomous robots, but rather remotely controlled arms with a truly scary level of precision, similar to the surgical robots already in use.

The interesting thing here isn’t so much the robot, but rather the control system being used. Virtual reality is known right now as a gaming technology, but it’s not difficult to envision VR headsets making this kind of job much easier, and remotely controlled machines way more popular.