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 ")

Prototype Robotic Masseur Has The Touch
'The automatic massager began to fumble gently...'

Medical Assistant Robot May Roam The Halls Of Hospitals
'Take care, sir.'

Amplified Nerves Lead To Mind-Controlled Prosthetic Hands
'The electrical impulses generated by your brain command everything...' - Martin Caidin, 1972.

FlyCroTug Micro Drones Do Heavy Lifting
'It extended three of its tiny arms sideways to lock on...' - James P. Hogan, 1979.

 

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

A Passing Drone Has Covid-19 Advice
'Gold dots against blue, basketball-sized, twelve feet up.'

Prototype Robotic Masseur Has The Touch
'The automatic massager began to fumble gently...'

Trash Sorting AI Robot Presages Skynet, Thanks A Lot
Keep your head down, Kyle Reese.

Electric Unicycle Is A Tumblebug
'A tumblebug does not give a man dignity, since it is about the size and shape of a kitchen stool, gyro-stabilized on a single wheel.'

Another Soil Bacterium Eats Plastic
'...the plastic was dissolved before his eyes.'

reLive Memorial Come Back As A Tree
'It was time - time to go again. She touched the leaf. She was wanted.'

Engineered Living Building Materials
'... it was the cheapest building material known.'

Draw Circuits With Conductive Ink
'It's rewiring things... squeezing silver toothpaste in a ribbon along the printed circuitry.'

Arkangel: Automatic Visual Censoring
It's whatever the Party says it is, Winston.

NASA Competition To Design A Bucket Drum For Moon Mining
'There was a heap of discarded ore where Grantline had carted and dumped it...'

Medical Assistant Robot May Roam The Halls Of Hospitals
'Take care, sir.'

No Autonomous Trucks? Wait, What?
'...it resembled conventional human-operated transportation vehicles, but with one exception -- there was no driver's cabin.'

As Big As A Biltong - World's Largest 3D Printer
'Huge and old, it squatted in the center of the settlement park... On the concrete platform... lay a heap of originals to be duplicated.'

Drones Used To Smuggle Contraband Into Prison
'And some mega chip inside so it never runs into anything and no cop ever sees it.'

Are You Ready For Commercial Space Travel?
'It wasn't a pleasant trip; it was a miserable trip on a miserable, undersized tourist rocket...'

Amplified Nerves Lead To Mind-Controlled Prosthetic Hands
'The electrical impulses generated by your brain command everything...'

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.