Trimbot: The garden maintenance robot that prunes & trims (so you dont have to)

British Summer Time has just ended (did you remember to turn your clocks back?), which means we’re back to Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) until next March. The clocks going back also means we are edging ever closer to winter and if you’re a homeowner with a garden, you’ll know that the prep work you do now really matters before the colder weather hits.

But what if keeping your bushes trimmed and your flowers pruned was as simple as hiring a robot gardener?

Introducing the Trimbot…

Funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 programme, the Trimbot project was conceived in 2016 and has been led by the University of Edinburgh. It’s goal: to support farmers, help people with limited mobility and/or maintain community gardens.

The original project brief focussed on a modified Indego lawnmower with a robotic arm mounted atop to allow it to undertake trimming and pruning tasks. The resulting battery-powered Trimbot is a far cry from that, though, featuring five pairs of cameras and 3D mapping technology to enable it to move around an outdoor space, like a garden, avoiding obstacles and carrying out maintenance tasks with its custom trimming tool as it goes.

But the Trimbot doesn’t just massacre unruly hedges as it encounters them. Its powerful computer algorithms enable it to compare overgrown bushes with the ‘ideal’ final shapes as it trims. Furthermore, its automated secateurs can perfectly prune roses by pinpointing the exact part of each plant’s stem that should be cut.

You can check out the Trimbot’s dexterity in this video from Cutting Hedge research:

What do you think? Is the Trimbot the future of garden maintenance, or a concept that won’t make the cut? Tweet us @PolytecNews

Image credit: University of Edinburgh

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