NYPD to Use Knightscope Security Robot to Help Police City

The city will also use Boston Dynamics' Spot as part of its push to better use technology to bolster security efforts.


The K5 is just one of several security robots Knightscope has in its lineup.
The New York City Police Department earlier this week shared details on some of the newest technology it is using to do its work.

Security robot developer Knightscope has signed a pilot contract with the New York City Police Department, and starting this summer, one Knightscope K5 robot will be used to help police patrol Manhattan.

“Technology is here, and we cannot be afraid of it,” said New York City Major Eric Adams at a press conference in Times Square on Tuesday, where he outlined the city's recent investment in robotics to help increase public safety.

In addition to working with Knightscope, the city also announced that it had purchased two Spot legged robots from Boston Dynamics, which the city are calling “Digidogs,” and GPS tracking systems developed by StarChase.

“We are scanning the globe on finding technology that will ensure this city is safe for New Yorkers, visitors and whomever is here,” Adams added. “If we were not willing to move forward and use technology on how to properly keep cities safe, then you will not keep up with those who are doing harmful things to hurt New Yorkers.”

At the conference, NYPD Chief Jeffery Maddrey said the city is leasing the Knightscope robot from the company as part of a six-month pilot. The department plans to start using the robot either in June or July, and it will initially be deployed in Times Square or at a subway station, he said.

Knightscope K5 robot outfitted with numerous sensors to optimize safety

The company sells 10 different security robots, some of which are designed to be stationary and others that are meant to be used either indoors and outdoors or both.

The K5 robot is an indoor/outdoor robot that features four HD cameras, one infrared thermal camera, 16 microphones, one amplified P.A. speaker/horn, and one strobe light. It navigates autonomously by taking advantage of five lidar sensors and seven sonar sensors. It has a max speed of 3 mph, weighs 398 lb., and is 62.5 in. in height. It was designed to operate 24 hours a day and can recharge itself without the need of a human, the company said.

The robot's data can be monitored and collected using the Knightscope Security Operations Center. It is also capable of sending live alerts to public safety officials.

Knightscope has experience working with the police

Knightscope's security robots were designed to be used in number of open settings, including airports, casinos, hotels, and corporate offices. This is not the first time the company has partnered with public safety officials. In a release announcing its partnership with NYPD, it highlighted its work with Los Angeles County and how it helped reduce crime in Huntington Park, Calif.

“Knightscope offers public safety officials an effective way to augment their agencies, which in many cases are already strained by significant recruiting challenges,” the Mountain View, Calif.-based company said in a statement. “The robots are fun, engaging, photographic, and respectful of everyone’s privacy.”  

Knightscope goes on U.S. tour

Knightscope stopped by New York City this week as part of its nationwide Robot Roadshow. The point of the tour is to help educate members of the public and investors about how the robots work and interacts with the real world.

 “As a native New Yorker (born in Queens!), this is a particularly proud and emotional day for me,” said William Santana Li, chairman and CEO, Knightscope, in a statement. “From the day of that terrible attack on our city some two decades ago, I dedicated my life to better securing our country. To be trusted with the incredible responsibility of helping my hometown is truly a dream come true.”

5th Generation K5 (NASDAQ: KSCP)

About the Author

Cesareo Contreras's avatar
Cesareo Contreras
Cesareo Contreras was associate editor at Robotics 24/7. Prior to working at Peerless Media, he was an award-winning reporter at the Metrowest Daily News and Milford Daily News in Massachusetts. Contreras is a graduate of Framingham State University and has a keen interest in the human side of emerging technologies.
Follow Cesareo:  
Follow Robotics 24/7 on Facebook
Follow Robotics 24/7 on Linkedin

Email Sign Up

Get news, papers, media and research delivered
Stay up-to-date with news and resources you need to do your job. Research industry trends, compare companies and get market intelligence every week with Robotics 24/7. Subscribe to our robotics user email newsletter and we'll keep you informed and up-to-date.


The K5 is just one of several security robots Knightscope has in its lineup.

Robot Technologies