/Scientists have created a miniature palm-sized robot that can walk and overcome obstacles thanks to its flexibility. The development of scientists from Bilkent University is described in the journal IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters.
One of the main problems of small robots is that they often get stuck when obstacles appear on the way. The fact is that because of their height, they are not able to step over thresholds.
In a new work, researchers overcame this limitation – they created a flexible miniature palm-sized robot that, thanks to its soft legs, is able to overcome small obstacles.
The limbs of the robot are made of polydimethylsiloxane and equipped with DC motors that provide their movement.
“Most soft robots are built using pneumatic drives. These drives work very well and integrate with soft materials, but they need a source of compressed air, which often makes robots cumbersome, and sometimes does not allow them to overcome obstacles on the way. We wanted to create a robot that combines soft materials and conventional drives, such as DC motors, which easily provide miniaturization and unimpeded movement”.
Onur Ozkan, lead author of the study
Tests have shown that the robot can overcome obstacles with a height of 144% of its own growth.