SRUC robot horse is put through its paces
HND Equine Studies Student Eilidh Simmons practises jumping with RoboCob
SRUC has unveiled a new £100k state-of-the-art robot horse – the first of its kind in Scotland.
The Equestrian Eventing Simulator – named RoboCob by students - allows the rider to experience everything from true-to-life Grand Prix dressage movements, such as Piaffe and Passage, to jumping grid work or negotiating technical combinations on the cross-country course.
Thanks to its motion control technology, it can replicate jumps of up to 1.20m high and comes with three screens which provide real-time and printable feedback.
The simulator, which can be used by novices and technical riders alike, is the latest addition to a suite of technological innovations being used in the teaching of Horse Care and Equine Studies at SRUC's Oatridge campus in West Lothian.
SRUC was shortlisted for a Times Higher Education Award in the Technical or Digital Innovation of the Year category and for a Herald Higher Education Innovative Use of Technology Award for its use of robotic cameras to track and record riders’ movements and biomechanical jackets to measure their posture.
Mary Thomson, Vice Principal of Skills and Lifelong Learning at SRUC, said: “This is part of our innovative approach to teaching and learning, finding modern digital solutions to deliver active blended learning.”
Programme Leader Louise Bulmer said: “We are delighted with our new Racewood Eventing Simulator, the first of its kind in Scotland.
“It’s a fantastic learning resource for our students and a great addition to our outstanding equestrian facilities. The simulator will help improve rider performance and safety and thereby contribute to improving horse welfare.
“We also look forward to the simulator being used by equine industry groups and as a way to increase access to the equestrian industry.”
HND Equine Studies Student Eilidh Simmons said: “It’s really realistic but it’s probably a lot more forgiving. It doesn’t move unless you’ve got your balance right so it’s good for improving your accuracy.”
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Posted by SRUC on 15/12/2023