A team of Caltech robots combines two of the world’s most attractive technologies – drones and bipeds – to create their new robot, called Leonardo.
Caltech ‘s team unveiled its new two – legged Leonardo robot this week in a document published in newspaper Scientific robotics. Along with their paper, they released footage of the robot walking on a rope and also moving around the cones of a skateboard.
A bipedal robot that balances like a bird
Leonardo, which means “LEGS ONboARD drOne”, is designed in part to mimic birds that can jump and walk while using their wings for balance. Instead of wings, however, Leonardo, or LEO for short, has two drone propellers where he would otherwise have his hands.
According to a press release from Caltech, “LEO is the first robot to use multi-joint legs and propeller-based propellers to achieve a fine degree of control over its balance.” LEO is able to combine its flying and walking abilities to overcome difficult terrain and even perform a few party tricks in the Caltech video (below), which is comparable to some of the best videos of viral robots. Boston Dynamics. Some of them Boston Dynamics videos Surely show staff members pushing their two-legged Atlas robot and pushing it with a hockey stick to show its ability to maintain balance.
LEO may be the forerunner of future rotor ships on Mars
The Caltech team explains that LEO also shows an impressive balance, thanks in part to its drone-like design. “Because of your propellers, you can pierce or push a LEO with a lot of force without actually overturning the robot,” said Elena-Sorina Lupu, co-author of the article. The team then hopes to improve LEO’s performance by making its legs stiffer so that they can withstand more weight and increase the thrust of the machine’s propellers. They also hope to improve the robot’s capabilities for artificial intelligence by allowing it to automatically maintain more weight with its propellers if necessary – for example, when walking on uneven terrain.
“In the real world, LEO technology can encourage the development of adaptive landing systems made up of controlled foot joints for air robots and other types of flying vehicles,” the California Institute of Technology scientists said in a statement. The vision is truly beyond science fiction, in which an airplane or spaceship can land on uneven terrain due to adaptive legs and fast automatic correction by small propellers. In fact, the team behind LEO believes that its technology can one day be used for rotary ships on Mars where it can improve safety and efficiency and strengthen our ability to explore the red planet.