Are Micro Robots the Tow Trucks of the Future?
In a recent Standford University experiment, 6 micro-robots teamed together to pull a 1.8 ton vehicle. The microTug robots alone can pull over 2,000 times their own weight. The machines utilize special gecko inspired “shoes,” which allow the microbots to pull more than their body weight.
“By considering the dynamics of the team, not just the individual, we are able to build a team of our ‘microTug’ robots that, like ants, are super strong individually, but then also work together as a team,” lab researcher David Christensen told the New York Times.
The androids work on multiple surfaces without complex infrastructure, in the demonstration they pull a vehicle on concrete.
You can watch “a team of 6 super strong microTug microrobots weighing 100 grams pulling the author’s unmodified 3900lb (1800kg) car on polished concrete,” published in the researchers video (below).
Small androids working together will have many benefits including retrieving objects/images in hard to reach places, aid authorities in hostage situations and will benefit future technologies, such as 3D printing drones that can replicate on site.
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