It is balloon artwork on steroids: a pneumatic, form-changing tender robotic capable of navigating its ecosystem with no requiring a tether to a stationary energy source.
Designed by researchers in UC Santa Barbara mechanical engineering professor Elliot Hawkes’ team, it is also a main stage in the work to carry tender robots to human environments, where by their qualities are uniquely suited for conversation with and all around individuals.
“The key challenge that we’re attempting to deal with is to make a human-scale tender robotic,” reported Hawkes, whose paper appears in the journal Science Robotics. Most tender robots to day tend to be compact, and normally are tethered to the wall for energy or compressed air, he described. But what if they could create a tender robotic huge sufficient and sturdy sufficient to carry out human-scale interactions and unbiased sufficient to navigate varied, unstructured environments, these kinds of as disaster