LONGVIEW, Texas (KLTV) - Some LeTourneau University students are on a wild goose chase ... literally. Canadian geese can be an expensive cleanup problem on golf courses, so some LeTourneau engineering students designed and built something that safely addresses that issue. It’s called The Badg-r, which stands for Big Amphibious Goose Remover.
Most people think of geese as pretty or maybe even majestic, but to The Badg-r, they are a target, according to Badg-r Team Leader Byron Coffin the fifth.
“We have a neural network that is running that analyzes and identifies what’s a goose and what’s not. So we actually trained that with about 8000 images of Canadian geese so it can know the difference between a Canadian geese and a duck,” Coffin said.
So as far as geese, its ducks are in a row.
“In the morning, or whenever they set the patrol, it’ll leave the doghouse here and it will go out on patrol. It’ll follow a GPS path scanning for geese. Whenever it sees one it will chase the goose until it flies away, and then it will return to its patrol path and just keep looking,” Coffin explained.
And just before its goose is cooked, meaning its batteries:
“It’ll just go back to its doghouse dock and keep recharging,” Coffin stated.
Now where did this idea come from?
The goose that laid that golden egg was Electrical Engineering Professor Hoo Kim who, on a trip to California with some students, met the CEO of A&K Systems, which makes pest control software.
Still with me? Okay.
Professor Kim told the CEO about the engineering student’s project builds, and the CEO said:
“Oh, you guys did this; an RC, actually: a car build. So he actually explored this idea to chase birds," Kim said.
So, birds of a feather Taylor Adamek, Ancel Carson and Byron Coffin V began badgering geese to see if the project would fly.
It didn’t fly, but it did roll right along, even swimmingly, since geese do float.
The electric motor in the only noise it makes, though it does have a blinking light, which is apparently equivalent to yelling:
“Get out of my yard,” Byron and I threatened.
Oh, and they only have one good shot of the Badg-r chasing off the geese because they say the geese never came back while Badger was on patrol.
Although the geese may cry foul, the Badg-r looks like it has a birdie.
The Badger is still in the prototype stage, and they are having issues with getting it 100 percent waterproof, but they plan on sticking with the project until it works exactly as they designed it.