Academic journal article The Technology Teacher

ITEA Member Receives Invention Award

Academic journal article The Technology Teacher

ITEA Member Receives Invention Award

Article excerpt

For his work in the development of mobile robots for use in hazardous environment applications, ITEA member Harry T. Roman was awarded the 2005 Inventor of the Year award by the New Jersey Inventors Hall of Fame.

Roman's 23 mobile robots saved Public Service Electric & Gas Company $10,000,000 in operational savings, removing human workers from potentially hazardous work situations. These revolutionary machines were developed in concert with robot developers and manufacturers at a central New Jersey laboratory designed and managed by Roman. Many have been in continuous use at the company's nuclear power plants. An integral part of this lab was to educate and train human workers about the use of robots and the operational and maintenance benefits of these machines.

Of particular note in Roman's award citation was his development of an oil tank cleaning and inspection robot for use in large oil storage tanks. This oil tank inspection robot is now used worldwide to save significant time and money and human exposure. Previously, this task involved emptying the entire tank, with humans entering the tank to perform a laborious inch-by-inch cleaning and searching of the steel floor for possible pitting and deterioration that could lead to oil leaks into the environment. This normally would take six to eight weeks to accomplish. Roman's robot can perform this task, with the tank remaining filled with oil and fully operational, in a matter of a few days.

Roman holds nine U.S. patents, six of which involve robots for: the automated placement of work points in free space; a radiation inspection robot; an oil tank inspection machine; and a device for visually inspecting electric power consumption meters. …

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