A Soft Robot that Develops like Vines might help in Rescue Operations – ZMR Blog
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A Soft Robot that Develops like Vines might help in Rescue Operations

A Soft Robot that Develops like Vines might help in Rescue Operations

It is seriously a breakthrough. Yes, we are talking about the new soft robot developed by the Stanford scientists,which is provided with cameras. What’s interesting about these cameras is that they can develop similar to a vine into crevices and tiny nooks to look for individualslocked in the debris of a collapsed building. The notion of this robot wasmotivated by natural organisms that spread across a distance by developing such as fungi, nerve cells, and vines.

Allison Okamura of the Stanford University,the US, said, “Fundamentally, we are attempting to comprehend the basics of this new approach to attain movement or mobilityout of a mechanism.”

To validate the potential of the robot, the team designed a prototype that locomotes through several hurdles, travels toward a selectedarea, and develops into a free-standing configuration. The researchers said that the robot can serve a variedarray of applications, predominantly in the regions of rescue&search and medical devices.

The robot is a soft material tube crumpledwithin itself, similar to an inside-out sock, whichdevelops in asingle direction when the substance at the facade of the tube changes, as the tube grows into right-side-out. The material in the prototypes was a thin, inexpensive plastic and the body of the roboteverted when the researchersdrovepressurized air into the fixed end. In other forms, fluid could substitute the pressurized air. The model results in tip movement without the body movement.

Vine Bot

Elliot Hawkes from the University of California, Santa Barbara, said,“As the material extends, the body grows from the end but the remaining body doesnot move. The body can be jammed between rocks or stuck to the environment, but that doesnot prevent the robot as the tip can carry ongrowing as new material is attached to the end.”

The teamvalidated the advantages of this technique for getting the robot from one location to another in numerous ways. It developed through a hurdlepath, where it went over flypaper, nails, and sticky glue and up an ice wall to provide a sensor. These sensors can potentially recognize carbon dioxide generated by the stuck survivors.Even though it was pricked by the nails, it successfully accomplished its route, as the region that was pierced did not carry onmoving and, consequently, self-sealed by residing on nail’s top.

The research team said that the usesthey are aimingat are those where these robots can move through a toughsetting, where the structures are unpredictable and there are unidentified spaces.


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