UNEXMIN is an EU-funded Horizon 2020 project that developed a novel robotic system, primarily for the autonomous exploration and mapping of Europe’s flooded mines, but also with other applications in mind. The Robotic Explorer platform, made by three robots – UX-1a, UX-1b and UX-1c, uses non-invasive methods for autonomous 3D mine mapping for gathering valuable geological, mineralogical and spatial information. This can possibly open new exploration scenarios so that strategic decisions on the re-opening of Europe’s abandoned mines can be supported by actualised data that cannot be obtained by any other ways, without major costs and/or risks.
The UNEXMIN Multi-robot Platform represents a new technology line that is only made possible by recent developments in autonomy research that allows the development of a completely new class of mine explorer service robots, capable of operating without remote control. Such robots do not exist nowadays and UX-1 is the first of its kind.