Tours of NIST

Response Robots Performance Measurement

Tour date/time: Monday, Nov 2, at 3:00 p.m.

NOTE: You will be on a mezzanine with open grid flooring. Closed-toe, non-stiletto heel shoes are recommended, as are pants.

With sponsorship from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate and several military organizations, NIST is developing a suite of Standard Test Methods for Response Robots to quantitatively evaluate robotic capabilities for emergency response and other hazardous applications. These standard test methods measure robot mobility/maneuvering, manipulation, energy/power, sensing, radio communication, human-robot interaction, logistics, and safety to facilitate comparisons prior to testing in more realistic scenarios.

Statistically significant robot performance data captured within standard test methods measure incremental system improvements, highlight break-through capabilities, guide procurement and deployment decisions, and support operator proficiency training. Fifteen standards have been adopted internationally and dozens more are being developed with associated apparatuses, procedures, and performance metrics. They are being standardized through the ASTM International Committee on Homeland Security Applications, Operational Equipment, Robots (E54.08.01), which includes equal representation of responders, robot manufacturers, and civilian/military test administrators. The suite of test methods address a range of robot sizes and capabilities including throwable robots for reconnaissance tasks, mobile manipulator robots for package size and vehicle-born improvised explosive devices, along with rapidly deployable aerial and aquatic systems. The Robot Test Facility is used to prototype test methods and conduct experiments on robot performance in order to develop the most effective means of measuring capabilities, collecting data, and synthesizing the results.


Net-Zero House

Tour date/time: Thursday, Nov 5, at 3:00 p.m.

NIST's new Net-Zero Energy Residential Test Facility will enable the development and demonstration of measurement science needed to achieve net-zero energy residential homes. The facility will initially be used to demonstrate that a residence, typical in size/features of homes in the metropolitan D.C. area, can produce as much energy from renewable energy resources as it consumes on an annual basis. It will subsequently be used to provide "real world" field data to validate and improve energy models and to improve laboratory-based measurements of systems and components to better represent field performance. This facility, designed to achieve LEED Platinum certification, represents the joint efforts of NIST's Engineering Laboratory, Building Science Corporation, the Department of Energy's Building America Program, and NIST's Office of Facilities and Property Management.


Cyber Forensics Lab

Tour date/time: Friday, Nov 6, at 9:00 a.m.

The Computer Forensic Tool Testing (CFTT) project at the NIST has researched and tested numerous forensic tools capable of recovering and reassembling files in the absence of file system metadata. This technique is typically accomplished by searching for files based on file signature content (i.e., header/footer file signatures).

The lab tour will provide an overview of the testing strategy employed.


Tours are limited to about the first dozen people to sign up.

You can sign up for these tours through your registration or by sending email to either of the Local Arrangements Chairs: Elizabeth Fong or Paul E. Black.