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Robotic Automation INspection

[RAIN] - Introduction

[RAIN] - Paragraphs


The RAIN Laboratory is part of ADVR. Our focus is to develop robots to be used in inspection task or automation. Thanks to a multi-disciplinary background, including physics, computer science, robotics, mechatronics, electronics, and the strong collaboration with the other research lines of IIT, we can deliver robots specifically designed for the application. Our method consists of developing prototypes from the idea to the advanced demonstrator. We take care of the mechanical design, electronics, sensors development and integration, control software and data analysis and visualization. Our technology transfer activities adapt the most advanced and innovative solution to bring life to the idea. Depending on the project requirements our prototypes usually reach a TRL up to 7, ranging from feasibility study to a full demonstration in a real scenario, to a prototype ready to be industrialized.

Industrial Applications

We design robots keeping in mind the industrial application. Our robot can face challenging task even when confined or harsh environments need to be inspected. The ability of withstanding high temperatures and operate in hazardous environments, or access places with small apertures is a set of features covered by our systems. Modularity and scalability drive the design of our prototypes with the aim of creating a robot family that can be easily employed in a variety of scenarios such as infrastructure inspection, nuclear and conventional power-plant maintenance, nuclear waste management or, eventually, disaster recovery. Completely customized robots can be developed and being equipped with innovative sensors. Depending on the application they can be teleoperated or autonomously carry on their task, collect data, or being integrated with artificial intelligence features.

Research Topics and Domains

Research Topics:

  • Inspection robots
  • Mechatronics
  • Automation
  • Sensor design
  • Data analysis
  • Intelligent Systems
  • Application-driven robot design
  • Multi sensing robots
  • Remotely operated robot


  • Energy generation & distribution
  • Plant Inspection & Maintenance
  • Oil & Gas and chemical
  • Nuclear
  • Infrastructure
  • Manufacturing
  • Quality control
  • Confined space
  • Risky inspection

We accomplished several projects with multinational companies operating in Energy, Aerospace, Automotive.

IDLIR has been developed in collaboration with Ansaldo Energia. It is a small climbing crawler able to inspect power generators. Thanks to its reduced size, advanced sensors, and its Artificial Intelligence it can verify the status of the generator reducing the time needed for the maintenance of the power plant.

RIVET-BOT can inspect with high precision surfaces and mechanical details such as rivets, joints, welds.

SNAKE we have developed, and we are continuously improving, a family of inspection robots able to face harsh environments, high temperature, dangerous area, or confined space. The project has been carried on in collaboration with Ansaldo Energia (video).

ROBOTIC ENDOSCOPES we are developing are able to autonomously navigate inside tiny oil duct or large pipe conducts.


[RAIN] - Partners and Collaborations


IIT Publications List

Last Publications
Leggieri S., Canali C., Caldwell D.G.
Design, modeling, and experimental analysis of the Crawler Unit for inspection in constrained space
Annual Reviews in Control, vol. 57
Poka A., Manara F., Ludovico D., Pistone A., Dal Verme L.D.M.C., Berselli G., Caldwell D., Canali C.
Design of a torsional stiffener for a cable-driven hyper-redundant robot composed of gear transmission joints
International Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology
Pistone A., Ludovico D., De Mari Casareto Dal Verme L., Leggieri S., Canali C., Caldwell D.G.
Modelling and control of manipulators for inspection and maintenance in challenging environments: A literature review
Annual Reviews in Control, vol. 57

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