Robotic Snakes and Power Plants

Robots, snakes, nuclear power plants. It sounds like some Hollywood B-movie, but in fact, it may be the key to making nuclear power safer.

It turns out that nuclear power plants have a lot of small nooks and crannies that aren’t exactly safe for humans, and these tend to be ignored during safety inspections. To fix this problem, scientists at Carnegie Mellon University are tinkering with the idea of sending robotic snakes into dangerous areas to better inspect the safety of power plants.

According to CNET, the 37 inch long snakes have LED lights and a video camera attached to their head. They can climb as far as 60 feet deep into pipes, and with the ability to make turns, they make borescopes obsolete. Scientists also believe the robots could double as search and rescue snakes. But seeing how snakes and robots seem to be the villans in almost every movie and, we’re withholding our judgment for now.

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