The robot called Kengoro can do push ups. Created by researchers from the University of Tokyo, Kengoro is a little different from most robots.
Instead of using gearboxes, Gengoro uses actuators that pull on wires to mimic muscles. To combat the actuators getting hot, the robot has a cooling system that releases water vapor or “sweat” to cool down the actuators. This results in a robot that much more closely resembles human anatomy than other more rigid robots.
Kengoro graces the cover of Science Robotics this month.
MantaDroid is an underwater Manta ray shaped robot. Developed by researchers Chew Chee Meng and Yeo Khoon Seng from the National University of Singapore (NUS) Department of Mechanical Engineering, the robot is driven by flexible pectoral fins.
The robot can swim for at 0.7m per second for up to 10 hours and could be used for underwater mapping or reconnaissance. Manta rays are considered to be very graceful and efficient swimmers.
A study published this week in PNAS (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences) is authored by researchers from Harvard’s Wyss Institute and MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL). The researchers have developed artificial muscles capable of lifting 1,000 times it’s own weight.
The artificial muscles are not expensive to create and are “programmed” by using origami techniques. Using a combination of a skeleton, fluid medium and flexible skin, the muscles can grip, lift and even twist.
Researchers at EPFL’s Robotic Systems Laboratory have developed a “secret agent” fish robot. The idea is that the robot will mimic the behavior of the fish and join in the school to better understand the fish behavior.
Led by Professor Francesco Mondada, the group demoed the robotic fish at the Adaptive Motion of Animals and Machine (AMAM) symposium in Sapporo Japan earlier this year. See the second video below.
Posted in Research
Waymo, a company that spun off from Google in 2016, is set to have completely driverless cars with passengers in Phoenix soon.
They are currently testing Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid minivans with no humans at all inside on public roads in Phoenix. If they get this right, adding a passenger via their early rider program will be easy.
Posted in Robot News