Guardian Robots

The “Guardian” series of robots is owned and produced by the independent Habit of the company “Wales & West Ltd”.  It has been produced for over 30 years and is possibly the best known and most widespread of available pseudo-military robots within the Technosphere.

It was designed from the beginning to be a relatively low-TQ chassis with the option to upgrade its control circuits and emulation software for use in higher-TQ environment. Its basic mechanical structure means that it is both robust and economical and can be exported to and used within very low-TQ Habitats.

Stylistically it has a somewhat alien appearance due to the “dogs-leg” ambulatory system and the military-styled helmet. It stands around 2 meters tall at rest but it capable of rising higher with extended legs or crouching lower as required. Its chassis is all-metal as standard although cerametal versions are available and it can have added armour panels in ceramics, metals or even carbon-composites. It runs on an internal micro-fusion unit with a standard operating time of 72 hours (per water tank), or E-cells (120 hours) or D-Cells (687 hours).

It was designed to operate in autonomous and semi-autonomous modes and its major differentiating factor from other robots is its highly-advanced emulation software that allows it to operate in conjunction with non-networked human systems. This means that unlike most autonomous ‘bots it does not need to operate in isolation to humans and has a well-defined and reliable IFF system as well as emulation to enable it to conduct autonomous FoF inquisitions “on the spot” and without human controllers (although this is generally advised against).

The Guardian can mount a number of weapons systems directly onto its frame but is most often used to carry indigenous weaponry to whatever Habitat is assigned and various software patches are available to enable it to utilise anything from a 20th century weapon to a modern pulse-type weapon or even close-combat weapons such as knives and swords.

It’s reaction times and actual combat capabilities are largely dictated by the software installed although its basic mechanical structure does limit to some degree, in both speed and operational environment, upgrades exist to enable it to operate in cold climates which is it major problem area, although operation in sandy or dusty areas can also prove problematic without adequate filters.

The major use of the Guardian series is as sentry robots operating in autonomous mode, particularly for sensitive areas that do not expect much nearby human activity or, better yet, at times or in areas where no human interaction is required.  Their innate reliability means that they are long-term investments with low-overheads and somewhat future-proofed if the extended software options are taken. The cost of running a security force consisting of Guardians is lower than any other robotics system and far cheaper than utilising expensive humans in the same role.

Some Habitats have used Guardians in police or military roles however the manufacturers advise against this, again due to the limitations of their controlling non-sentient systems.
Controlled remotely, however, they can be very useful troops operating on full remote and under human control. Susceptibility to operational hacking is then the main draw-back of any robot system; however Wales & West are also regarded as one of the premiere non-UKS suppliers of hack and anti-hack sub-system software and software upgrades are available for various emulation enhancements.

Running independently the Guardian system can operate in partial local autonomy i.e. they will react instantly to local attack/situations without requiring operator intervention but require command authorisation to open fire, or full autonomy where they react aggressively against perceived threats without requiring any user authentication. As with all robots operating in such a way the chances of errors is very high.

The Guardian basic Chassis and TQ-9 software comes in at an exceptionally reasonable C9,500 which has helped propel it to the top of the sales charts and along the way made both Mr Wales and Mr West, exceptionally wealthy people – resulting ultimately in their ability to establish, set up and run their company as a fully-fledged independent Habitat.

 

Guardian MkIV:

Height: 200 cm
Weight: 256kg
Energy: Micro-Fusion, D-Cell, E-Cell.
Operating System: WAW07.12.34
Warranty Period: 1 year
Carrying Capacity: 136kg
Standard Sensors: optical, Aural, Thermal