Can Robots Clean up the Earth?

Robert Downey Jr., aka Iron Man, says that robots and nanotechnology combined will be able to clean up the earth within a decade.

His first step is to organize the Footprint Coalition, which is expected to launch within one year. You can sign up for a newsletter now. The next steps beyond that are not yet clear, but Iron Man says he has a plan.

Speaking at Amazon’s re:MARS conference, Downey Jr. described himself as “a one-man carbon footprint nightmare colossus.” He’s ready to clean up his act, and plans to devote himself full-time to the effort. The re:MARS name stands for Machine Learning, Automation, Robotics, and Space. Downey was the keynote speaker. And while his presentation was funny and focused largely on the Iron Man franchise, he also got the crowd cheering at the idea of using AI to reverse pollution and human damage to the environment.

The re:MARS conference is a follow-up to the MARS meeting hosted by Amazon owner Jeff Bezos. The MARS meeting is a conference to which participants are invited, which “embraces an optimistic vision for scientific discovery to advance a golden age of innovation” and hopes to bring that about through sharing of information and ideas.

The re:MARS meeting was open to the public. Its focus was on helping people apply artificial intelligence to their organizations. The re:MARS website points out that 37% of American businesses are already using AI in some way.

Amazon has invested heavily in robots and artificial intelligence, supporting innovation as well as bringing robots and AI into its own workforce and its consumer product offerings. Amazon pointed out that it has added 300,000 jobs at the same time.

Whatever the future of robots as planet cleaners, we’re confident that motion control will be a big part of the equation. Keep your servos, drive and control systems, and all the rest of the Rexroth electrical industrial motion control arsenal working well at your facility. Call us whenever you need Rexroth support.

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