The family of robot animals from the German developer of robotics Festo is growing.
The company presents many new robots, for example: a swarm of ants that can interact with each other, as well as butterflies and dragonflies, which are characterized by all the ease and grace of these insects. When they were created, the company focused not only on their appearance, but also on behavioral characteristics. The ants coordinate with each other all their actions and movements. Each ant, that is 13-centimeter long, has on its belly a radio module, through which precise coordination is carried out.
As for butterflies-robots. The weight of each butterfly is only 32 grams, this includes two servos, a pair of small batteries, and a laser-made casing. After one charging that lasts fifteen minutes, butterflies will be able to flutter for about 4 minutes. And their flight looks very impressive. There’re not just butterflies, but a whole system that consists of ten high-speed infrared cameras installed in a room where butterflies fly. They track the infrared markers installed on the robots, transmitting data in real time to the central computer; so that’s how coordination of butterflies is going in the space. You can hardly distinguish these bionic butterflies from the real ones in the room where they fly. Robotic seagulls and dragonflies that can fly just like their living relatives.
The seagull was developed in 2012. Later, a dragonfly, that can hang in the air no worse than its natural counterpart was invented. All the details of the dragonfly were made on a 3D printer, and you can control this miracle with a smartphone. Through these developments, the company could edge out the development market of flying drones, but it doesn’t need it. The technology of flying and hovering in the air is worked on these two prototypes.
The kangaroo robot. At the core of the BionicKangaroo is the mechanism of “recuperation” – it uses the energy recovered from one jump to help it make another. Real kangaroos quickly got tired and could not jump for a long time without this mechanism. Springs that store mechanical energy on the landing and give it away on the next jump are used in this project. BionicKangaroo that weighs 7 kilograms and highs one meter can make a jump of 80 cm in length and 40 cm in height. The power supply system, that forces it to move, is a pneumatic accumulator. The robot is controlled by a special bandage that reads myoelectric signals from the human forearm. Robot shark. This unmanned underwater facility – a robotic shark length of about one and a half meters and weigh up to 45 kg.
Like a real fish, the robot uses the tail to move and control its movement. The robot moves in a fish way, so it is very difficult to distinguish it or at least isolate it on the background of a real marine fauna. It can swim above and dive to depth. Such shark can rich an enemy ship unnoticed. She can spy, repair ships, and arrange sabotage.
The robot-spider. From the beginning it is worth mentioning that the spider model was printed using the 3D printer. The engine is integrated with the servo motors of the paws, three in each: the resulting system provides simple control of flexible, plastic movements with convenient coordination from the control panel. He was shown in one of the series of MythBusters.
Underwater robot-snake. The mechanical snake is designed to perform maintenance and repair of various mechanisms on the seabed, mainly on oil platforms. It is capable of replacing costly autonomous underwater vehicles, easily slipping into places where cumbersome robots can not reach.