Teleoperated service robots are used to perform hazardous operations in hostile environments such as nuclear reactors, space missions, warehouses, etc. Since they have to interact with both the environment and human operators, it is essential that they be so designed as to involve no risk to the operators, the environment, or the robot itself. Where it is impossible to eliminate the risk, this at least must be limited.
The work described in this article was developed in the context of the European Union V Framework Programme EFTCoR project (Environmental Friendly and CostEffective Technology for Coating Removal), which addressed the development of a solution to the problem of retrieval and confinement of sub-products from ship maintenance operations. Given the experience of the DSIE research group in both the design of component-based software applications for tele-operated service robots , and the combined use of safety standards (like ANSI/RIA 15.06-1999 and European Standard EN 61508:2001) with specific methodologies for safety systems development (like Rapid Object-Oriented Process for Embedded Systems, ROPES) , we decided to develop an integrated development framework.