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Meet the Israeli Robot That 'Hears' Through Dead Locust's Ear


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The auditory organ of a locust.

Researchers from Tel Aviv University have successfully connected the ear of a dead locust to a robot that receives electrical signals from it, and responds accordingly.

Credit: Tel Aviv University

Researchers at Israel's Tel Aviv University (TAU) have connected a dead locust's auditory organ to a robot, which responds to sounds picked up by the ear.

TAU's Ben M. Maoz said, "Our task was to replace the robot's electronic microphone with a dead insect's ear, use the ear's ability to detect the electrical signals from the environment—in this case vibrations in the air—and, using a special chip, convert the insect input to that of the robot."

In a demonstration, the locust's ear caused the robot to move forward in response to a single hand clap, and move backward when the researchers clapped twice.

Said Maoz, "This initiative opens the door to sensory integrations between robots and insects—and may make much more cumbersome and expensive developments in the field of robotics redundant."

From The Jerusalem Post
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