Sarcos Defense, a wholly owned subsidiary of Sarcos Robotics of Salt Lake City, has been awarded a contract by the Air Force Technology Acceleratory Program (AFWERX) to develop an artificial intelligence (AI) platform on behalf of Sarcos’ customer the Center for Rapid Innovation (CRI) at Air Force Research Labs (AFRL). The platform will enable human-scale dexterous robotic systems and is based on the upper body of Sarcos’ Guardian XO wearable exoskeleton robot.

The system can learn how to perform tasks with human-like movement through positive reinforcement and imitation machine learning technologies known as Cybernetic Training for Autonomous Robots (CYTAR). Unlike many of today’s AI platforms that are characterized by a trial-and-error approach, Sarcos’ AI system enables human operators to teach Sarcos’ robotic systems to perform tasks correctly the first time.

“This is a unique opportunity to leverage a robotic system that is kinematically equivalent to the human body to lay the foundation for teaching robots how to move and accomplish tasks in the real world, the same way humans do,” said Denis Garagić, chief scientist for advanced systems and AI at Sarcos Robotics. “This success-based teaching will speed up the learning process of AI-enhanced perception, reasoning and decision-making techniques currently being implemented across Sarcos’ platforms.”

“We are excited to collaborate with Sarcos to leverage Sarcos’ unique robotic systems to develop a novel approach to success-based artificial intelligence systems” said Alok Das, senior scientist at AFRL’s Center for Rapid Innovation. “We will be working with end users throughout the Air Force to refine the CYTAR platform for Air Force- specific applications.”

Sarcos was founded in 1983 and employs about 100 people in its Utah operation.

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