Field Robotics and Paleontology

Finding fossils is awesome.  Having robots do it for you is even better.

Robotic Micropaleontology

Paleobots

-noun, plural – fossil hunting robots. Paleobots use neural nets to classify fossils.  They excavate them and collect them.

Robotic Paleontology

Breakthroughs in machine learning have enabled field robots to identify and collect fossils.

Fossils

Photos and information about my fossils and fossil collections

Expeditions

Photos and stories of past expeditions

Projects

I’m always working on something – Robots, fossils and computer vision

Media coverage

Print, television, and web

Code

A lot of my code is available under open source licenses for you to use.

Patents

I am a patented inventor! See the text and diagrams here.

Some fossil collections from my expeditions

Paleobot 2 dataset

Here is a data set for training a neural net to find teeth and bones in a sandy matrix. These images augment the Hemipristis dataset. There is a similar negative dataset with several hundred elements.

Hidden coves

The tide was higher than usual along Calvert Cliffs. We had to wade through hip deep water to move from one cove to the next. We made good finds in the coves. Up on the edge of one beach where it met the cliff, I spotted a pristine snaggle. I picked it up. In the...

Old-School Brownie

I went back to Brownie with some high rubber boots. No robotics, just noodling around on the beach and clay matrix. We got there at about 7 o'clock to catch the 8:48 low tide. Soon after we passed the first bend around the cliffs we saw some interesting hunks of clay....

Some fossil collections from my expeditions

KPg?

North Carolina. I got up early hoping to get to the stream first to claim the fresh fossils. I went downstream in hope of something new. I instantly hit pay dirt. The sand bar was about fifty feet across and full of gravel. The perfect location for a large deposit of...

Rügen

The thunderbolts of Rügen are orange, crystaline bullets. They are the remnants of ancient squidlike creatures, which became extinct with the dinosaurs. They are called belemnites. We stayed three days on the northern corner of Rügen where the clear blue waters of the...

Hidden coves

The tide was higher than usual along Calvert Cliffs. We had to wade through hip deep water to move from one cove to the next. We made good finds in the coves. Up on the edge of one beach where it met the cliff, I spotted a pristine snaggle. I picked it up. In the...

Paleobot 2 dataset

Here is a data set for training a neural net to find teeth and bones in a sandy matrix. These images augment the Hemipristis dataset. There is a similar negative dataset with several hundred elements.

Washington Post

I exhibited paleobot one and paleobot two at the 2017 Maker Fair. The Washington Post interviewed me for an article about young makers. Here is the full...

A Successful Autonomous Excavation

Paleobot 2 excavates fossil shark teeth on Friday the twenty-fourth on the Chesapeake bay. It is now operating fully autonomously. Paleobot stops and goes forth in a farming style. It inches along and picks up fossils when it sees them. Once it picks up the fossils,...

Visit us at the Maker’s Faire, March 2018

Come to our booth at the Northern Virginia Mini Maker’s Faire, March 18th

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See the Paleobots

See both versions of the paleobots on display.
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Run your own paleobot

Come by our booth and try a real paleobot.
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Take home a fossil of your own

If your paleobot finds a fossil, you can keep it.