Hexapod Robot Has Neural Net Gait Selection

This little six-legged robot has quite a repertoire of gait styles, and, like the Gambler, knows when to walk away and knows when to run thanks to its neural net processor.

Silke Steingrube of the Bernstein Centre for Computational Neuroscience in Göttingen, Germany, and colleagues disdained inflexible walking styles. Blessing their robotic creation with triple-jointed legs with sensors, and a neural net processor that determines the best gait, the determined little hexapod robot can make the choice that leads to the best progress depending on the terrain.


(Hexapod robot walking video)

Using its raft of sensors – which detect foot-contact pressure, light, sound, heat and the robot's inclination – the robot can select the correct gait for uphill, downhill and various types of rough ground. By programming the robot to adopt the most energy-efficient gait possible, the researchers ensured it would switch gaits whenever its incline sensors were triggered. In tests, the robot taught itself 11 different walking styles. "The technique should work equally well in four-legged, six-legged or even wheeled robots," says Steingrube.

It has a flight reflex, too: if a rear sensor detects, say a very high temperature, it interprets this as a threat. "The neural network generates a fast, wave-like gait that is appropriate for running away," says Steingrube.

If the robot gets into difficulty, with a foot stuck in a hole, say, a number of sensors are stimulated. This creates a large input signal, which induces an unpredictable, chaotic output from the neural network, causing it to randomly choose one of its 11 gaits. In other words, the robot cycles through its repertoire until it frees itself.

Robots walk in all kinds of ways. Take a look at this whimsically-titled article for lots of examples: Ministry of Silly (Robot) Walks.

From New Scientist.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 1/18/2010)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )

Related News Stories - (" Robotics ")

Robot Garbage Trucks Visualized
'It was a bulky, shining cylinder over twenty metres long.' - Harry Harrison, 1956

Rippling Fin Robot Drone Swims And Walks
'... the curious parallelism to animal motions, which was so striking and disturbing to the human beholder...' - HG Wells, 1898.

Cute Teddy Bear Robot Favorite Of Hospitalized Children
'...thought had been given to its programming.' - Anne McCaffrey, 1990.

Robot Dog Learns To Be Doggy From Real Dogs
'So we took pictures of Guzub making a Three Planets, and I could construct this one to do it exactly right down to the thousandth of a second.' - Anthony Boucher, 1943.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

Powdered Regolith Propulsion
'... filling their great tanks with the finely divided dust which the ionic rockets would spit out in electrified jets.'

Ford's SafeCap, Opposite Of Niven and Barnes' Napcap
'In the napcap a client became an instant yoga master...'

Would You Get 'Chipped'? Michigan May Ban Employers
'Employees above a certain level were implanted with advanced microprocessors...'

Tesla Autopilot: What Does An Autonomous Car See When It Looks At The Road?
'Jeremiah is a sports-model to begin with and that kind is awfully hot-tempered.'

DNA Controls Swarms Of Molecular Robots
'They exist in loose swarms...'

Tether Asteroids To Save Us All
'If anything can glue the asteroids back into the planet they once were, magnology will do it.'

Blaux Your Personal Commuter Cooling Unit
A cooling unit had to be strapped to every commuter's back, by law.

3D Printed Damascus Steel Now Possible
'...lined with durite, that strange close-packed laboratory product.'

R9X Hellfire Missile With Long Blades Kills Queda Leader
'He was still roaring when the knife missile flicked past him...'

Would You Swallow An Origami Robot?
'Swallow it in an emergency--it goes down easily and works just as well inside as outside.'

Perhaps You Might Be Interested In Habitable Exoplanet Moon Real Estate
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away...

Blurry Face Photos Made 60 Times Sharper
Perfect tool for blade runners.

SpaceX Will Build Floating Spaceports!
'...a single perfectly level platform, which rose so high above the water that it was not splashed by the waves.'

Fast Radio Bursts And Space Beacons For Interstellar Navigation
'Every beacon has a code signal as part of its radiation...'

Robot Garbage Trucks Visualized
'It was a bulky, shining cylinder over twenty metres long.'

Clarke Was Right, Artificial Intelligences DO Dream
'Of course you will dream. No one knows why."

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.