If you were to gather up all the recent robots inspired by designs found in nature, you would have a pretty awesome robot petting zoo. The newest addition to it might be this bot designed by engineers at the Georgia Institute of Technology, which takes its cues from desert lizards who can move without trouble over loose, tricky terrain like sand dunes. The team behind the bot hopes its means of locomotion could one day help a new generation of of rover robots get around alien planets quickly and easily. Keep reading to get a look at the new design in action.
Georgia Institute of Technology
The tongue is a strong muscle that plays a role in our ability to speak and digest (and taste) food. But for paralyzed individuals, the tongue could also be the key to gaining some mobility. Researchers at Northwestern University, the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, and the Shepherd Center in Atlanta have launched a clinical trial of a tongue drive system for wheelchairs. The system is based on first piercing users' tongues with a magnetic stud. A headset with sensors that can read the magnetic signals emitted from the piercing is worn by the user, who moves their tongue to signal the desired movements of their wheelchair. For example, pointing the tongue to the upper left corner of the mouth will signal the wheelchair to move forward.