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SlothBot Takes Leisurely Approach to Environmental Monitoring


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The structure of the SlothBot.

Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology have designed an environmental monitoring robot that measures chemical and climate-related changes in forest canopies.

Credit: Gennaro Notomista

Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) researchers have designed an environmental monitoring robot that measures chemical and climate-related changes in forest canopies, and is powered by photovoltaic panels to operate for months at a time.

The wire-crawling SlothBot must switch from one cable to another in trees without falling, which Georgia Tech’s Gennaro Notomista described as “a tricky maneuver and you have to do it right to provide a fail-safe transition.”

SlothBot will be clad with a three-dimensionally-printed shell to protect its inner workings from rain and wind.

The robot is a proof of concept for the "theory of slowness" formulated by Georgia Tech's Magnus Egerstedt, which applies low energy consumption principles by restricting movement. Said Egerstedt, "For environmental robots, you should only move when you absolutely have to."

From Georgia Tech News Center
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Abstracts Copyright © 2019 SmithBucklin, Washington, DC, USA


 

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