Phase-changing material could allow even low-cost robots to switch between hard and soft states.
In the movie “Terminator 2,” the shape-shifting T-1000 robot morphs into a liquid state to squeeze through tight spaces or to repair itself when harmed.
Now a phase-changing material built from wax and foam, and capable of switching between hard and soft states, could allow even low-cost robots to perform the same feat.
The material — developed by Anette Hosoi, a professor of mechanical engineering and applied mathematics at MIT, and her former graduate student Nadia Cheng, alongside researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization and Stony Brook University — could be used to build deformable surgical robots. The robots could move through the body to reach a particular point without damaging any of the organs or vessels along the way.
Robots built from the material, which is described in a new paper in the journalMacromolecular Materials and Engineering, could also be used in search-and-rescue operations to squeeze through rubble looking for survivors, Hosoi says.
The Latest on: Squishy robots
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The Latest on: Squishy robots
- This first response robot diving into disaster zones to save lives on June 15, 2019 at 10:14 pm
Born out of the BEST (Berkeley Emergent Space Tensegrities) Lab at UC Berkeley, Squishy Robotics was initially created with space in mind. "The original idea was to have a robot that could be dropped ... […]
- Uber's self-driving CEO says the company needs robo-taxis because it can't grow its fleet of human drivers fast enough on June 13, 2019 at 3:15 pm
Will Uber's self-driving robot cars eventually replace its nearly 3 million human ... was that Uber engineers had forbidden the car from slamming on the brakes, even if it detected "a squishy thing" — ... […]
- DJI's new $500 RC robot features a camera, 31 sensors and a mini cannon on June 12, 2019 at 7:14 am
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- The power of culture on June 6, 2019 at 3:00 pm
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- Don’t be shallow. A tale of subsurface microplastics and the processes that transport them. on June 6, 2019 at 7:36 am
It’s deep, in squat lobsters and in the squishy bits of giant larvaceans ... The underwater microplastic vaccum, or ROV ROBOT HOOVER. I got to the conclusions, mulled over the joy and pain of the ... […]
- Sure, It Can Backflip. But Can a Robot Hold Down a Desk Job? on June 4, 2019 at 7:30 am
finding the squishy muscle giving just a bit, so that you gain some additional clearance around a radiator and … there! You’ve got it. Today’s robots wouldn’t have all these extra choices ... […]
- This Sleep Robot Is Only Worth it if You're Tired and Alone on May 24, 2019 at 1:09 am
The robot is also fairly well padded, though it’s rather firm—not at all soft and squishy like, say, teddy bear or a chubby cat. Think more like a pillow that’s somehow managed to get a six pack abs ... […]
- The Squishy Robots That Could Save the World on May 13, 2019 at 5:16 am
Two years ago, Alice Agogino, a UC-Berkeley mechanical engineering professor, was working on a contract to build exploratory robots for NASA Ames. She had been recruited to help design what would ... […]
- These ‘squishy’ emergency robots are designed to save lives on May 2, 2019 at 4:53 pm
These robots are made to respond before the first responders. “We think that it can save lives,” Squishy Robotics CEO Alice Agogino tells NBC of the robots built to assess ground conditions before ... […]
- Berkeley startup develops squishy robots to aid disaster rescue on April 30, 2019 at 10:21 am
Squishy Robotics, a Berkeley startup, is beta testing its squishy shape-shifting, sensory robots, with potential applications to provide critical information about disaster zones. Structurally, these ... […]
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