The nimble-footed bug robot can change direction on a dime

Jul, 2021 - By SMI

The nimble-footed bug robot can change direction on a dime

Making smaller scale robots with the same power and control as larger robots is one of the most difficult challenges today.

Engineers at the California University, have constructed an insect-like robot that can skitter and turn on a dime. The bot's beautiful footwork is owed to well, its fancy feet, which alternate stickiness and make severe turns using changing voltages. The new robot is based on the design of the team. In 2019, it was listed. It was made of a polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) rectangular sheet covered with an elastic polymer. When an alternating current is applied, the material bends and straightens swiftly and constantly, moving forward.

In reality, the scientists claimed that the robot was extremely intelligent, able to move 20 bodies per second on a level surface while also carrying a tiny weight. The main issue was that it wasn't very manipulable, so engineers gave it a more advanced foot in the latest edition.

Their previous robot could move really quickly, but it didn't have any control over whether it moved left or right. The robot would often move randomly if there was a tiny change in the production process. The robot was not symmetrical, and it turned to one side, according to Liwei Lin, the study's principal author. The insertion of these footpads was the most significant innovation in this study.

Electrostatic adhesion is the force that causes a balloon to stick to your hair or clothes when you rub it. When a voltage is supplied to one of the robot's feet, it sticks to the floor and causes the robot to turn sharply in that direction.

The bot's agility was proved by the researchers having it go through a maze, which it completed in 5.6 seconds. In other experiments, it was outfitted with gas sensors and given the task of developing a map of gas concentrations in a given area, which could point to future applications in finding leak sources. The team created two versions, one that was powered by a power source and the other that was powered by a battery. The tethered model was the fastest, with a top speed of 28 body lengths per second, almost as fast as a real cockroach.

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