An unconventional motion mode has enabled a robot prototype to conduct missions in wild environments.
A team from the Technical University of Madrid's Robotics and Cybernetics Research Group has developed a land mobile vehicle that has no wheels or legs. ROSPHERE, a single spherical form, scrolls by itself to conduct missions and is inherently stable. A single ball, ROSPHERE seemingly moves without any external force, and its locomotion can be compared to the ball of hamsters. Spherical robots generally have numerous motion systems, and ROSPHERE has a pendulum system that has a capacity of two independent motions, and this internal mechanism can conduct straight movements as well as curvilinear motion that is similar to a car.
The researchers found the robot to be suitable for rolling and gathering information on crops, and for monitoring farming techniques. Further work on its autonomous navigation and mechanical strength could increase the potential applications of the robot.
From Technical University of Madrid (Spain)
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