Self-Burying Robots - What Could Go Wrong?

Self-buying robots have been created by Carnegie Mellon researchers, who apparently believe that, while sending robots to explore the planets might be an exciting endeavor, using robots to explore the world under our feet might be just as much fun.

Subterranean exploration so far has primarily been performed with the assistance and involvement of human beings. As more ground is broken and more layers are explored, the need for a robotic solution to make digging both easier and safer becomes greater. The applications of a self-burying robot extend from mining and military applications to humanitarian applications.


(Self-Burying robot video)

To validate the design concept discussed in the working principle we built a full robot as shown... The drills are all constructed from machined aluminum due to its light weight and its simplicity to work with. Due to the complexity of developing a full simulation, the ability to quickly and accurately machine new parts was important to finalize the design parameters. In order to reduce the size of passive surfaces of the robot, which contribute to resistance while digging, the drills are all connected by a thin aluminum frame. The electronics and actuators fit inside the rotating drills, with power and communication to the robot being tethered. The Quad Digger is 27 x 27 x 19 cm and weighs approximately 5 kilograms.

To test the capabilities of this system, common play sand was used because of its small grain size and consistency.

This self-burying robot reminds Philip K. Dick fans of the claws from his 1953 short story Second Variety:

Some of the little claws were learning to hide themselves, burrowing down into the ash, lying in wait...

Via Design of a Bimodal Self-Burying Robot (by Carl Darukhanavala, Andrew Lycas, Arpit Mittal, and Ashwinram Suresh from Carnegie Mellon University Robotics Institute) and IEEE Spectrum; thanks to an anonymous reader who pointed this story out and provided a reference.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 6/26/2013)

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 ")

Tesla Robotaxis Will Automatically Recharge Themselves
'Then it appeared to make up its mind, and trundled over to a wall socket...'- Stephen Barr, 1960.

Husqvarna Automower 435X AWD
'Gramp Stevens sat in a lawn chair, watching the mower at work...' - Clifford Simak, 1944.

Abundant Robotics Autonomous Apple Harvester Robot
'... little machines, that went from plant to plant... cutting off the ripe fruit.' Otfrid von Hanstein, 1935.

China Building Robot Wives
'Want a life-companion, a pleasant one?' - Alice W. Fuller, 1895.

 

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

Datagrid Model Generation Perfect For Eternal Cities Of Science Fiction
'... there was enough flexibility to allow for wide variation.

Kazahk Ironist Protester Arrested For Blank Sign Protest
'...a man carried a white rectangular sign, blank on both sides.'

Bitcoin Surges Again, To $7,000
'... electronic, private cash, unbacked by any government, untraceable, completely anonymous.'

China Develops Taste Testing Robots
'Install taste buds in the end of one tentacle...'

North Sea Stone Age Reconstruction And Philip K Dick
'Your Dip digs back into antiquity. Rome. Greece. Dust and old volumes.'

Tesla Robotaxis Will Automatically Recharge Themselves
'Then it appeared to make up its mind, and trundled over to a wall socket...'

New Lifelike Material Powered By Artificial Metabolism
'... The biological robots were not living creatures.'

Husqvarna Automower 435X AWD
'Gramp Stevens sat in a lawn chair, watching the mower at work...'

Elon Musk Foretells Tesla Sans Steering Wheel
'How about the steering wheel... I don't need one.'

Adversarial Patches Trick Computer Vision
'The surveillance cameras can all see it, but then they forget they’ve seen it.'

Amazon Warehouse Computer Can Fire People Now
'The system has already fired five people...'

BrainEx Restores Some Activity To Severed Pig Head
'... they placed the brain in a special solution, having all the properties of Nursing the brain cells.'

Yes, But Do Astrobees Have Lasers For Lightsaber Training?
'... Ancient weapons are no match for a good blaster at your side, kid.'

'Young Razorbacks Before Their Katanas Grow In'
'Twin robotic arms with gleaming three-foot sword blades unfolded from the forward hydraulic assemblies...'

A New Way To Run Into Things
'He made an adjustment, pointed the tube at the wall beside Etzwane, and projected a cone of light.'

'Metallic Wood' Strong Like Titanium, Floats In Water
'A metal... light as cork and stronger than steel...'

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.