MIT Robot Cheetah Video Shows Gait Transition

Slick new video from MIT's Cheetah team shows the transition point where the robot goes from a trotting gait to a full gallop.


(MIT's Cheetah Robot - faster than a real cheetah?)

The MIT Cheetah—about the size and weight of a real cheetah—requires approximately 1 kW when running at 22 km/h, which translates to a cost of transport, or COT (defined as power consumption divided by weight times velocity), of 0.52. The team says this COT performance rivals that of running animals of the same size. By comparison... Boston Dynamics' BigDog has a COT of 15, which is far less efficient than their biological counterparts.

The MIT team, led by Professor Sangbae Kim, believes that electric motors are a better choice than hydraulics... His group developed its own "three phase permanent magnet synchronous motor," which reportedly doubles the torque density of the commercial motors they were using in the robot. With further improvements, the motors will help reduce the robot's COT to 0.33, which is "between the efficiency of runners and fliers in nature."

And they also incorporated biomimetic principles. A Kevlar tendon stretches from the foot to the knee, reducing the stress on the legs during stride by close to 60 percent. The bones themselves are made primarily out of a light polyurethane foam-core which is covered in a high stiffness resin, which makes them both light and strong. The researchers also gave their robot a spine, which is actuated not by individual motors but a differential system driven by the action of the legs...


(Diagram for MIT's Cheetah robot)

I know that fans of Neal Stephenson's 1992 novel Snow Crash are thinking of the Rat Thing:

The body is Rottweiler-sized, segmented into overlapping hard plates like those of a rhinoceros. The legs are long, curled way up to deliver power, like a cheetah's. It must be the tail that makes people refer to it as a Rat Thing, because that's the only ratlike part - incredibly long and flexible.
(Read more about Stephenson's Rat Thing)

However, I'd also include the slamhound from William Gibson's 1986 novel Count Zero; I remember what an impression it made on me when I first read it when the novel first came out.

THEY sent A SLAMHOUND on Turner's trail in New Delhi, slotted it to his pheromones and the color of his hair. It caught up with him on a street called Chandni Chauk and came scrambling for his rented BMW through a forest of bare brown legs and pedicab tires. Its core was a kilogram of recrystallized hexogene and flaked TNT.

Via IEEE.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 5/16/2013)

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 ")

Why Not Nurse Grandma With A Robot?
'She's made of a combination of springs, levers, acoustic instruments...'- David Keller, 1928.

Should Robots Have Civil Rights?
'I've seen things... you people wouldn't believe...'- Blade Runner.

Toshiba's Lifelike Communication Android
Philip K. Dick offered a glimpse into this future in 1968.

Most Advanced Robotic Hand?
'Hands I could order from the atomics-engineering equipment companies...'- Robert Heinlein, 1956.

 

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

Why Not Nurse Grandma With A Robot?
'She's made of a combination of springs, levers, acoustic instruments...'

Flock Of Minisats Will Image The Earth
'We... dropped roughly a thousand eyes on Beta Hydri IV.'

Should Robots Have Civil Rights?
'I've seen things... you people wouldn't believe...'

Robert Heinlein, Your Self-Driving Car Is Almost Ready!
'Mary Risling settled back for a little nap...'

The Manned Maneuvering Unit Story
'Little spurts of red-orange flame from the reaction pistol marked his companion's trail...'

Scheherazade, An Open Story Generator
'How can you compete with an IBM heavy-duty logomatic analogue?'

Sample The In Vitro Meat Cookbook
'I grabbed two Syntho-Steaks out of the freezer...'

Erased Memories In A Flash Of Light
'Someone, probably at a government military-sciences lab, erased his conscious memories...'

'Diamond Nanothreads' Now, Someday Space Elevators?
'It is a continuous pseudo-one dimensional diamond crystal'

'Artificial Spleen' Cleans The Blood
'The workability of wholly mechanical organs... '

Raffia, The Google Streetview Camel
The old and the new, together.

It's Boonta Eve! You Can Podrace With Drones
Thank the Hutts.

Leia Display System - Our Only Hope?
'Lilo and Vaffa moved through a maze of floating advertisements of ghostsmoke and holomist...'

A Bloody Rare Vegan Burger
For that real punched in the face feeling.

Bigelow's Inflatable BEAM Module Ready For ISS In 2015
'The bubble had inflatable seats and an inflatable table...'

Toshiba's Lifelike Communication Android
'How would you like to own an owl?'

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.