AI robot navigation system secures $5 million investment


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An Imperial-founded startup has raised $5m (£3.8m) to develop advanced robot navigation systems.

SLAMcore was founded by Imperial’s Dr Stefan Leutenegger, Professor Andrew Davidson, and Dr Owen Nicholson alongside alumus Dr Jacek Zienkiewicz. It has developed technology that allows robots and drones to navigate unfamiliar environments.

Professor Andrew Davison
Professor Andrew Davison

This ability is critical for autonomous robots – such as driverless cars – to prevent crashes.

The technology that underpins this is known as simultaneous localisation and mapping (SLAM). It allows autonomous drones and robots to develop spatial intelligence, including the ability to accurately calculate their position, understand unfamiliar surroundings, and navigate them reliably.

SLAMcore are developing this technology to easily integrate into existing platforms to boost the development of new robotic technology by companies who may not have the resources to develop the technology themselves.

Founders of SLAMcore
Founders of SLAMcore

Robotics revolution

CEO Dr Owen Nicholson said “The robotics revolution may seem just around the corner, but there is still a big gap between the videos we see on the internet and real-world robots.

We’re really trying to democratise robots. It shouldn’t be the reserve of just a handful of tech giants Dr Owen Nicholson CEO

“Here at SLAMcore, we are helping robot and drone creators to bridge the gap between demos and commercially viable systems.”

Speaking to the Telegraph, he added: “We’re really trying to democratise robots. It shouldn’t be the reserve of just a handful of tech giants because that’s not good for innovation.”

The funding round was led by global technology investor, Amadeus Capital Partners. Existing investors SPARX and Toyota AI Ventures joined the round alongside newcomers, MMC Ventures and Octopus Ventures.

SLAMcore was developed with Imperial Innovations, Imperial College London’s technology commericalisation partner.


Deborah Evanson

Deborah Evanson
Communications Division

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