Offroad Robotics

Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario
What the facility does

Mining systems and field robotics

Areas of expertise

Offroad Robotics is a multidisciplinary research facility that supports field robotics and systems automation R&D for the mining and exploration industries. The Offroad Robotics research equipment includes a host of mobile robot platforms and associated software, from small robots to access challenging environments (e.g. multiple Husky A200 ground vehicles and AscTec Pelican UAV) to automation-ready full-scale machines. The Kubota robotic R520S wheel loader and robotic RTV900XT utility truck are both diesel-powered and hydraulically actuated robotic vehicles. They are suitable for machine robotics and automation R&D at a variety of possible field sites and at Queen’s own field-testing sites near Kingston. All Offroad Robotics platforms have access to a range of IP-rated sensors, including several SICK LMS scanning laser rangefinders, a SwissRanger TOF camera, a Velodyne LiDAR, high-accuracy GPS systems, high-quality IMUs, Wi-Fi and RFID communications and other specialized sensing equipment.

Research services

Field robotics, mining robotics, autonomous vehicles, perception and navigation algorithms, control systems design, system prototyping, robotics software development, modelling and simulation, field studies

Sectors of application
  • Aerospace and satellites
  • Automotive
  • Construction (including building, civil engineering, specialty trades)
  • Defence and security industries
  • Environmental technologies and related services
  • Forestry and forest-based industries
  • Mining, minerals and metals

Specialized Lab



Offroad Robotics

Robotic Kubota R520S wheel loader

Fully equipped with a host of sensors (e.g. LiDAR, GPS, IMU, odometry) and communications systems, as well as robot control software


Robotic Kubota RTV900XT utility truck

Fully equipped with a host of sensors (e.g. LiDAR, GPS, IMU, odometry) and communications systems, as well as robot control software


Clearpath Husky mobile robot

Fully customizable for deployment with any configuration of sensors


AscTec Pelican UAV

Equipped with monocular camera and LiDAR sensors

Offroad Robotics at the Queen’s Mining Field Test Site

Field Test Site


Queen’s Mining’s Field Test Site provides space for field equipment preparation and outdoor testing, especially for large mobile equipment. Offroad Robotics has access to tens of acres of outdoor testing grounds near Verona, Ontario, including an indoor workshop and a garage bay, as well as outdoor muck piles and rough terrain for pre-field prototyping and testing.

Offroad Robotics at Jackson Hall

Simulation Space


Prototyping, office, and computer-based simulation space. The Offroad Robotics research laboratory is equipped with mechatronics workstations, mobile computing equipment and indoor development space in Jackson Hall on Queen’s main campus.

  • General Dynamics Land Systems-Canada
  • Barrick Gold Corporation
  • Clearpath Robotics
  • Epiroc AB
  • RockMass Technologies
  • Cameco Corporation
  • MDA Space Missions
  • European Space Agency
  • Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC)
  • Ontario Government
  • Mitacs
  • Centre for Planetary Science and Exploration (CPSX)
  • NSERC Canadian Robotics Network (NCRN)



Offroad Robotics publications on QSpace

New technology developed at Queen's University will improve mining safety

Mining venture strikes gold in pitch contest