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The robot has cameras that use artificial intelligence to analyse different situations. Photo and video: Marilú Báez
Crime

Watch as Malaga police show off their new AI-powered crime-fighting robot 'dog'

The computerised recruit went out on its first patrol in the city today and turned many heads as it headed down Calle Larios

Francisco Gutiérrez

Malaga

Tuesday, 19 March 2024, 16:26

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There were many surprised shoppers and tourists alike in Malaga city centre's Calle Larios this Tuesday (19 March) as the Local Police force showed off its new recruit, a robot 'dog' equipped with artificial intelligence (AI).

During its first patrol through the city, the computerised canine showed it could walk forwards and backwards, sideways, emit pre-recorded sounds, climb stairs and record vision with cameras. It is also capable of analysing social situations and making decisions. The robot carefully studied a skateboarder rolling pass on its patrol today, and it can also detect thefts or cases of physical violence.

The plan is to roll out more of the dog-robots in other Spanish cities, and even to the Spanish army. The University of Malaga, through the Institute of Technology and Software Engineering (ITIS), in collaboration with Telefónica's defence and security unit and the Spanish SME ALYSIS, is developing the robot as part of a research project financed by European Next Generation funds.

University of Malaga researcher Antonio Morales, councillor Avelino Barrionuevo and director of the ITIS Pedro Merin have presented the research project to the public. This police robot, they pointed out, will support and help the Local Police in their surveillance tasks. "It will never replace the human factor, which is essential," said Barrionuevo.

The mechanical part of the robot has been manufactured by a specialised company, Alisys, and the UMA's Institute of Technology and Software Engineering is developing the entire control system: batteries, communications, video cameras and its interaction with artificial intelligence.

Merino said the possibility of its industrial production "is enormous", with an estimated manufacturing cost of 200,000 euros per robot.

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