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Science & Technology

Harvard scientists develop snakeskin robot

By T.K. Randall
February 25, 2018 · Comment icon 4 comments



The robot moves in an eerily realistic manner. Image Credit: YouTube / Harvard University
The ingenious device uses special snake-like 'scales' to help grip the ground and pull itself along.
Developed by a team of researchers at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS), the snake-like contraption consists of a soft silicone rubber tube that repeatedly expands and contracts as air is pumped in to and out of it.

The key to its movement lies in its outer skin which has been laser cut to create 'scales' that, like those of a real snake, are able to grip the ground and help move the robot along.
The researchers tried cutting the scales in to a variety of different shapes including circles and triangles however it turned out that trapezoidal scales allowed for the longest strides.

It is hoped that, in the future, robots like this one could be scaled down to fit inside blood vessels where they could perform minor procedures or deliver drugs to specific parts of the human body.

Full-size ones could also be used to help locate victims after a disaster such as an earthquake.



Source: The Verge | Comments (4)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by Stiff 5 years ago
That's pretty cool. I usually have an aversion to snakes but I think I could live with these ones. (As long as they don't give them eyes.)
Comment icon #2 Posted by LV-426 5 years ago
What about big, pointy, venomous fangs? I know... I have a mean streak a mile wide
Comment icon #3 Posted by Stiff 5 years ago
Comment icon #4 Posted by Sundew 5 years ago
Oh great, now they'll have to make a robotic mongoose. 


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