PDG Robotics is a fairly new, independent firm based on Pale in the Truane's Star system. Its robot designers and programmers are known to be excellent regarding artificial intelligence concepts. It is becoming well known throughout the Frontier as the best of the upper-echelon robot manufacturers.
Here are a few of their standard products:
Engineering Control Models[edit | edit source]
PDG Engineering Control Model EC-5[edit | edit source]
This is a large, humanoid robot that is used in the engineering section of spaceships and starships of all sizes. With its high level of function and computer link, it acts as an extension of the ship's own damage control and maintenance systems. It often directs teams of lower level robots in the tasks of repairing and maintaining the ship.
The EC-5 is capable of inspecting any system, readout, or part and determining the course of action required, prioritizing based on the severity of the damage and importance of the damaged part. The EC-5 is found on board nearly all UPF capital ships and often acts as fighter crew chiefs on carriers, space stations, and spaceship construction centers. It was the competence of this robot that built PDG's reputation.
PDG Engineering Control Model EC-5(S)[edit | edit source]
This model looks and operates like a standard level 5 starship engineering control robot that is typically used to direct lower level damage control and maintenance robots. Even initial scans of its programming will lead one to believe it is only level 5. It will mimic Level 5 capabilities at all times until a certain command is given it, or a certain set of predetermined circumstances require it to activate its advanced functions.
The EC-5(s) has a hidden hardware embedded flash ROM that houses its level 6 'robot brain' functions. The advanced functions allow the robot to take control of a ship's computer via a computer link (it must have the proper command codes, of course), and defend itself.
Once activated, it will immediately log into the computer and change all security codes to a randomly determined code and write the code to an internal removable flash drive. It will continue to modify the security codes every ten minutes until directed to stop by its recognized handler(s). It will try to maintain intermittent communications via chronocom or radiophone with its handler(s) to receive instructions. For all practical purposes, the EC-5(s) can routinely operate the following computer programs via the computer link:
Communication, Life Support
To defend itself and the ship in level 6 mode the EC-5(S) can split each arm/hand giving it four thinly framed arms and hands which can be used to yield weapons and work consoles. It is typically armed with various small melee weapons and tangler grenades. As a further defensive measure, it has a built in holo-screen that it can use to hide nearly anywhere while it continues to control the ship via its computer link. Its first choice for combat tactics is an ambush.
The EC-5(S) has the capability to land small ships (HS3 or less) on planets (provided the ship is designed to do so) or park a ship in orbit around the nearest planet like object. When parking in orbit, its controller is usually planetside, so it will try to maintain a geosynchronous position at an altitude less than 1000km.
Very few of these are ever built, and they are not advertised. Most are sold to rich businessmen for use on their yachts to prevent hijackings or theft.
Security Models[edit | edit source]
PDG Perimeter Security Model PS-2(H)[edit | edit source]
This robot is small (about 45cm across), nimble, and capable surveillance machine. The 'bot's quad-rotor layout allows it to zip about in any direction, slip sideways through tight fits (doorways, trees, rocks, etc.), and sound like a swarm of angry wasps. This arrangement, along with its small size, gives it double the rate of acceleration (200 m/turn), turns (12), and climb (+/- 40 m/turn) of typical rotor-driven robots. The downside is that it has roughly 1/3 of the range (350km). It has four small landing claws that can grip many types of surfaces, allowing it to perch like a spider to a wall.
The purpose of the PS-2(H) is to extend the range of installation security under the control of the IS computer program by using its various sensor to spot and trail dangers from beyond weapons range while reporting back to the home system. Should it get too close to danger, it can activate a camouflage enabled holoscreen to safely hide while it quickly retreats. It draws power for the screen from its specially built compact parabattery, so screen time is limited. Nonetheless, this little 'droid is a favorite of remote outposts, police, and paramilitary types throughout the frontier.
PDG Perimeter Security Model PS-7(R)[edit | edit source]
This flying robot is specialized for perimeter security. With its rotatory wing flight capability and its nose turret mounted advanced imaging sensors; it flies patrol routes over a large area. Level 5 artificial intelligence gives it the ability to randomize the routes to increase unpredictability. The computer link allows it to communicate with the base computer and assist in the positive identification of targets.
The PS-7(R)'s standard weapon is an auto-loading, belly-turret-mounted grenade rifle that is fed from two ammunition hoppers, each with a capacity of 10 grenades. This allows the robot to select between two different types of ammunition and the auto-loading gives it a rate of fire of once per turn. The 'bot is capable of identifying and loading its own ammunition using two standard manipulator arms.
A secondary weapon of rifle size or smaller may be added to the sensor turret along with an independent power beltpack or 5 clips of ammunition. For extreme cases, a pair of rocket launcher rails may also be added to the PS-7(R). There is also a compartment designed to accept standard defense screens and power packs. These customizations will add to the final cost of the robot.
This robot is built on a heavy-duty chassis for survivability, but also to act as a transport. It has two external jump seats each capable of carrying a person or robot (anthropomorphic or standard body). This gives the PS-7(R) a secondary mission of search and rescue. It can use its arms to pick up a disabled passenger and strap it securely into a jump seat for evacuation. Many persons wounded during Laco's War owe their lives to the PS-7(R).
Notes & References[edit | edit source]
- From Star Frontiersman issues #14 and #17)
- Skein Armor is a special coating painted on the robot. It will absorb 1/2 damage from inertia based attacks up to 100 points at which time the paint is chipped away to provide protection.