MicroTug, the robot that can tow 1,200 times its weight

robots-microTug They are 6, weigh only 17 grams each, yet he managed to move a car and driver. 102 grams of a side and 1.8 tonnes from each other, the feat achieved by these robots MicroTug is impressive. Designed on the model of the ants, these amazing robots are able to pull a load 1,200 times their own weight. In addition to this ability to work effectively in a group, these robots have a pretty unique way of movement, also from research in biomimicry.

The MicroTub, a robot from research in biomimicry

Created by Dextrous Manipulation and Biomimetics lab of Stanford University, the MicroTug (μTug) are robots capable to draw a huge burden on their scale. To achieve such a feat, the researchers relied on more work in biomimicry. On the one hand the robot is able to operate in swarm. The researchers selected a particular mode of travel for many MicroTug can work together, like a swarm of insects. Thus, robots with legs that can walk or run were dismissed in order to favor a perfectly coordinated movement to maximize the force applied to the load. The other secret of MicroTug is this unique travel mode. This plate abdomen to the ground before operating the winch and pull his load him. This is where biomimicry intervenes again in this project. MicroTug for the MicroTug takes such charges, his body is inspired by gecko feet, this lizard ultra-adhesive tabs and able to climb on the windows. This is what allows these 6 MicroTug to draw a car, but also a 9 grams of MicroTug to raise 1 kg vertically glued to a window.

The static friction inspired by the gecko to found a new use. BDML researchers believe they can further increase the burden of their MicroTug and its timeliness.

Translation : Google Translate

Sources:

“μTugs: Enabling Microrobots Macro Forces to Deliver with Controllable Adhesives” research paper presented on ICRA 2015

“Dry Adhesive Vertical Climbing with a 100x Bodyweight Payload” research paper presented at ICRA 2015

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