A team of researchers at the Worcester Polytechnic Institute — WPI (Massachusetts) received a grant in the amount of 400 thousand dollars from the National science Foundation to create a snake-like robot able to move among the rubble and in confined spaces while eliminating the consequences of natural disasters.
In this project, WPI scientists create a soft robot made of silicone rubber. They consist of interconnected modules, each of which has its tubing, valves, pneumatic actuators, integrated sensors and control units.
Each segment soft robot capable of producing its own movement. In General, the movement of roosmaa is a coherent combination of the individual movements of each module.
Soft robots are a significant step forward compared to their rigid counterparts, which can damage objects (or themselves) in case of accidental collision. Soft robots are completely spared from this because they do not have discrete joints. They continuously bend, which makes them more maneuverable, especially in tight turns and in tight heaps.
WPI recently, scientists created a prototype of a soft snake-like robot, which they have been equipped with strain gauges. They allow the robot to accurately control the shape and position of the body – for example, skirting the wreckage while driving, or in the supine position. Once the robot is aware of the configuration of his body, he has better control over their movements.