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A shape-shifting robot built from 'smarticles' shows new locomotion strategy

A shape-shifting robot built from 'smarticles' shows new locomotion strategy
The Siliconreview
20 September, 2019

Researchers from Northwestern University have now discovered a new robot that is built of 3D printed smarticles (Smart Active Particles); it forms a robot physical system that can move by itself. The new device also contains biosensors that allow it to move in response to stimulus, and it can be controlled well enough and also can be navigated. This device will provide a controlled approach and are rudimentary robots, and their behavior is maintained by laws and mechanics of Physics.

The 3D printed smarticles have batteries with motors and limited computing power; the devices can change their location through cloud computing technology. The all-new Bionic chip which is placed in the device will help to respond to stimulus, and this is the first device that can respond much to stimulus through electric impulse and signal. "For many robots, we have electrical current move motors that generate forces on parts that collectively move a robot reliably," said Todd Murphey, professor of mechanical engineering,Northwestern University.

These new smarticles with 3D printed sensors can be used in various neuroprosthetic applications such as brain-to-machine interfaces and bionic prostheses which will increase the clinical impact as well as the usability of these devices. It can also transform its shape, modality, and function. This invention will pave ways to understand the fundamental trade-offs in system performance, resiliency, responsiveness, and adaptability.