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Sample records for biologically inspired robotic

  1. Biological inspiration used for robots motion synthesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zielińska, Teresa

    2009-01-01

    This work presents a biologically inspired method of gait generation. Bipedal gait pattern (for hip and knee joints) was taken into account giving the reference trajectories in a learning task. The four coupled oscillators were taught to generate the outputs similar to those in a human gait. After applying the correction functions the obtained generation method was validated using ZMP criterion. The formula suitable for real-time motion generation taking into account the positioning errors was also formulated. The small real robot prototype was tested to be able walk successfully following the elaborated motion pattern.

  2. Biologically inspired robots as artificial inspectors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph

    2002-06-01

    Imagine an inspector conducting an NDE on an aircraft where you notice something is different about him - he is not real but rather he is a robot. Your first reaction would probably be to say 'it's unbelievable but he looks real' just as you would react to an artificial flower that is a good imitation. This science fiction scenario could become a reality at the trend in the development of biologically inspired technologies, and terms like artificial intelligence, artificial muscles, artificial vision and numerous others are increasingly becoming common engineering tools. For many years, the trend has been to automate processes in order to increase the efficiency of performing redundant tasks where various systems have been developed to deal with specific production line requirements. Realizing that some parts are too complex or delicate to handle in small quantities with a simple automatic system, robotic mechanisms were developed. Aircraft inspection has benefitted from this evolving technology where manipulators and crawlers are developed for rapid and reliable inspection. Advancement in robotics towards making them autonomous and possibly look like human, can potentially address the need to inspect structures that are beyond the capability of today's technology with configuration that are not predetermined. The operation of these robots may take place at harsh or hazardous environments that are too dangerous for human presence. Making such robots is becoming increasingly feasible and in this paper the state of the art will be reviewed.

  3. A Project-Based Biologically-Inspired Robotics Module

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crowder, R. M.; Zauner, K.-P.

    2013-01-01

    The design of any robotic system requires input from engineers from a variety of technical fields. This paper describes a project-based module, "Biologically-Inspired Robotics," that is offered to Electronics and Computer Science students at the University of Southampton, U.K. The overall objective of the module is for student groups to…

  4. Biologically-Inspired Control Architecture for Musical Performance Robots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jorge Solis

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available At Waseda University, since 1990, the authors have been developing anthropomorphic musical performance robots as a means for understanding human control, introducing novel ways of interaction between musical partners and robots, and proposing applications for humanoid robots. In this paper, the design of a biologically-inspired control architecture for both an anthropomorphic flutist robot and a saxophone playing robot are described. As for the flutist robot, the authors have focused on implementing an auditory feedback system to improve the calibration procedure for the robot in order to play all the notes correctly during a performance. In particular, the proposed auditory feedback system is composed of three main modules: an Expressive Music Generator, a Feed Forward Air Pressure Control System and a Pitch Evaluation System. As for the saxophone-playing robot, a pressure-pitch controller (based on the feedback error learning to improve the sound produced by the robot during a musical performance was proposed and implemented. In both cases studied, a set of experiments are described to verify the improvements achieved while considering biologically-inspired control approaches.

  5. Biologically-Inspired Adaptive Obstacle Negotiation Behavior of Hexapod Robots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dennis eGoldschmidt

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Neurobiological studies have shown that insects are able to adapt leg movements and posture for obstacle negotiation in changing environments. Moreover, the distance to an obstacle where an insect begins to climb is found to be a major parameter for successful obstacle negotiation. Inspired by these findings, we present an adaptive neural control mechanism for obstacle negotiation behavior in hexapod robots. It combines locomotion control, backbone joint control, local leg reflexes, and neural learning. While the first three components generate locomotion including walking and climbing, the neural learning mechanism allows the robot to adapt its behavior for obstacle negotiation with respect to changing conditions, e.g., variable obstacle heights and different walking gaits. By successfully learning the association of an early, predictive signal (conditioned stimulus, CS and a late, reflex signal (unconditioned stimulus, UCS, both provided by ultrasonic sensors at the front of the robot, the robot can autonomously find an appropriate distance from an obstacle to initiate climbing. The adaptive neural control was developed and tested first on a physical robot simulation, and was then successfully transferred to a real hexapod robot, called AMOS II. The results show that the robot can efficiently negotiate obstacles with a height up to 85% of the robot's leg length in simulation and 75% in a real environment.

  6. Biologically Inspired Object Localization for a Modular Mobile Robotic System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zlatogor Minchev

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available The paper considers a general model of real biological creatures' antennae, which is practically implemented and tested, over a real element of a mobile modular robotic system - the robot MR1. The last could be utilized in solving of the most classical problem in Robotics - Object Localization. The functionality of the represented sensor system is described in a new and original manner by utilizing the tool of Generalized Nets - a new likelihood for description, modelling and simulation of different objects from the Artificial Intelligence area including Robotics.

  7. Biologically inspired control of humanoid robot arms robust and adaptive approaches

    CERN Document Server

    Spiers, Adam; Herrmann, Guido

    2016-01-01

    This book investigates a biologically inspired method of robot arm control, developed with the objective of synthesising human-like motion dynamically, using nonlinear, robust and adaptive control techniques in practical robot systems. The control method caters to a rising interest in humanoid robots and the need for appropriate control schemes to match these systems. Unlike the classic kinematic schemes used in industrial manipulators, the dynamic approaches proposed here promote human-like motion with better exploitation of the robot’s physical structure. This also benefits human-robot interaction. The control schemes proposed in this book are inspired by a wealth of human-motion literature that indicates the drivers of motion to be dynamic, model-based and optimal. Such considerations lend themselves nicely to achievement via nonlinear control techniques without the necessity for extensive and complex biological models. The operational-space method of robot control forms the basis of many of the techniqu...

  8. BiLBIQ A Biologically Inspired Robot with Walking and Rolling Locomotion

    CERN Document Server

    King, Ralf Simon

    2013-01-01

    The book ‘BiLBIQ: A biologically inspired Robot with walking and rolling locomotion’ deals with implementing a locomotion behavior observed in the biological archetype Cebrennus villosus to a robot prototype whose structural design needs to be developed.   The biological sample is investigated as far as possible and compared to other evolutional solutions within the framework of nature’s inventions. Current achievements in robotics are examined and evaluated for their relation and relevance to the robot prototype in question. An overview of what is state of the art in actuation ensures the choice of the hardware available and most suitable for this project. Through a constant consideration of the achievement of two fundamentally different ways of locomotion with one and the same structure, a robot design is developed and constructed taking hardware constraints into account. The development of a special leg structure that needs to resemble and replace body elements of the biological archetype is a speci...

  9. Biologically-Inspired Adaptive Obstacle Negotiation Behavior of Hexapod Robots

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Goldschmidt, Dennis; Wörgötter, Florentin; Manoonpong, Poramate

    2014-01-01

    by these findings, we present an adaptive neural control mechanism for obstacle negotiation behavior in hexapod robots. It combines locomotion control, backbone joint control, local leg reflexes, and neural learning. While the first three components generate locomotion including walking and climbing, the neural...... learning mechanism allows the robot to adapt its behavior for obstacle negotiation with respect to changing conditions, e.g., variable obstacle heights and different walking gaits. By successfully learning the association of an early, predictive signal (conditioned stimulus, CS) and a late, reflex signal...... (unconditioned stimulus, UCS), both provided by ultrasonic sensors at the front of the robot, the robot can autonomously find an appropriate distance from an obstacle to initiate climbing. The adaptive neural control was developed and tested first on a physical robot simulation, and was then successfully...

  10. Soft Robotics: Biological Inspiration, State of the Art, and Future Research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Deepak Trivedi

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Traditional robots have rigid underlying structures that limit their ability to interact with their environment. For example, conventional robot manipulators have rigid links and can manipulate objects using only their specialised end effectors. These robots often encounter difficulties operating in unstructured and highly congested environments. A variety of animals and plants exhibit complex movement with soft structures devoid of rigid components. Muscular hydrostats (e.g. octopus arms and elephant trunks are almost entirely composed of muscle and connective tissue and plant cells can change shape when pressurised by osmosis. Researchers have been inspired by biology to design and build soft robots. With a soft structure and redundant degrees of freedom, these robots can be used for delicate tasks in cluttered and/or unstructured environments. This paper discusses the novel capabilities of soft robots, describes examples from nature that provide biological inspiration, surveys the state of the art and outlines existing challenges in soft robot design, modelling, fabrication and control.

  11. Biologically-Inspired Hardware for Land/Aerial Robots

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Future generations of NASA land/aerial robots will be required to operate in the harsh, unpredictable environments of extra-terrestrial bodies including asteroids,...

  12. Energy-based control for a biologically inspired hexapod robot with rolling locomotion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takuma Nemoto

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents an approach to control rolling locomotion on the level ground with a biologically inspired hexapod robot. For controlling rolling locomotion, a controller which can compensate energy loss with rolling locomotion of the hexapod robot is designed based on its dynamic model. The dynamic model describes the rolling locomotion which is limited to planar one by an assumption that the hexapod robot does not fall down while rolling and influences due to collision and contact with the ground, and it is applied for computing the mechanical energy of the hexapod robot and a plant for a numerical simulation. The numerical simulation of the rolling locomotion on the level ground verifies the effectiveness of the proposed controller. The simulation results show that the hexapod robot can perform the rolling locomotion with the proposed controller. In conclusion, it is shown that the proposed control approach is effective in achieving the rolling locomotion on the level ground.

  13. A biologically inspired meta-control navigation system for the Psikharpax rat robot

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Caluwaerts, K; Staffa, M; N’Guyen, S; Grand, C; Dollé, L; Favre-Félix, A; Girard, B; Khamassi, M

    2012-01-01

    A biologically inspired navigation system for the mobile rat-like robot named Psikharpax is presented, allowing for self-localization and autonomous navigation in an initially unknown environment. The ability of parts of the model (e.g. the strategy selection mechanism) to reproduce rat behavioral data in various maze tasks has been validated before in simulations. But the capacity of the model to work on a real robot platform had not been tested. This paper presents our work on the implementation on the Psikharpax robot of two independent navigation strategies (a place-based planning strategy and a cue-guided taxon strategy) and a strategy selection meta-controller. We show how our robot can memorize which was the optimal strategy in each situation, by means of a reinforcement learning algorithm. Moreover, a context detector enables the controller to quickly adapt to changes in the environment—recognized as new contexts—and to restore previously acquired strategy preferences when a previously experienced context is recognized. This produces adaptivity closer to rat behavioral performance and constitutes a computational proposition of the role of the rat prefrontal cortex in strategy shifting. Moreover, such a brain-inspired meta-controller may provide an advancement for learning architectures in robotics. (paper)

  14. Adaptation of sensor morphology: an integrative view of perception from biologically inspired robotics perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nurzaman, Surya G.

    2016-01-01

    Sensor morphology, the morphology of a sensing mechanism which plays a role of shaping the desired response from physical stimuli from surroundings to generate signals usable as sensory information, is one of the key common aspects of sensing processes. This paper presents a structured review of researches on bioinspired sensor morphology implemented in robotic systems, and discusses the fundamental design principles. Based on literature review, we propose two key arguments: first, owing to its synthetic nature, biologically inspired robotics approach is a unique and powerful methodology to understand the role of sensor morphology and how it can evolve and adapt to its task and environment. Second, a consideration of an integrative view of perception by looking into multidisciplinary and overarching mechanisms of sensor morphology adaptation across biology and engineering enables us to extract relevant design principles that are important to extend our understanding of the unfinished concepts in sensing and perception. PMID:27499843

  15. Biologically inspired robotic inspectors: the engineering reality and future outlook (Keynote address)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph

    2005-04-01

    Human errors have long been recognized as a major factor in the reliability of nondestructive evaluation results. To minimize such errors, there is an increasing reliance on automatic inspection tools that allow faster and consistent tests. Crawlers and various manipulation devices are commonly used to perform variety of inspection procedures that include C-scan with contour following capability to rapidly inspect complex structures. The emergence of robots has been the result of the need to deal with parts that are too complex to handle by a simple automatic system. Economical factors are continuing to hamper the wide use of robotics for inspection applications however technology advances are increasingly changing this paradigm. Autonomous robots, which may look like human, can potentially address the need to inspect structures with configuration that are not predetermined. The operation of such robots that mimic biology may take place at harsh or hazardous environments that are too dangerous for human presence. Biomimetic technologies such as artificial intelligence, artificial muscles, artificial vision and numerous others are increasingly becoming common engineering tools. Inspired by science fiction, making biomimetic robots is increasingly becoming an engineering reality and in this paper the state-of-the-art will be reviewed and the outlook for the future will be discussed.

  16. Soft robotic arm inspired by the octopus: I. From biological functions to artificial requirements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Margheri, L; Laschi, C; Mazzolai, B

    2012-01-01

    Octopuses are molluscs that belong to the group Cephalopoda. They lack joints and rigid links, and as a result, their arms possess virtually limitless freedom of movement. These flexible appendages exhibit peculiar biomechanical features such as stiffness control, compliance, and high flexibility and dexterity. Studying the capabilities of the octopus arm is a complex task that presents a challenge for both biologists and roboticists, the latter of whom draw inspiration from the octopus in designing novel technologies within soft robotics. With this idea in mind, in this study, we used new, purposively developed methods of analysing the octopus arm in vivo to create new biologically inspired design concepts. Our measurements showed that the octopus arm can elongate by 70% in tandem with a 23% diameter reduction and exhibits an average pulling force of 40 N. The arm also exhibited a 20% mean shortening at a rate of 17.1 mm s −1 and a longitudinal stiffening rate as high as 2 N (mm s) −1 . Using histology and ultrasounds, we investigated the functional morphology of the internal tissues, including the sinusoidal arrangement of the nerve cord and the local insertion points of the longitudinal and transverse muscle fibres. The resulting information was used to create novel design principles and specifications that can in turn be used in developing a new soft robotic arm. (paper)

  17. Soft robotic arm inspired by the octopus: I. From biological functions to artificial requirements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Margheri, L; Laschi, C; Mazzolai, B

    2012-06-01

    Octopuses are molluscs that belong to the group Cephalopoda. They lack joints and rigid links, and as a result, their arms possess virtually limitless freedom of movement. These flexible appendages exhibit peculiar biomechanical features such as stiffness control, compliance, and high flexibility and dexterity. Studying the capabilities of the octopus arm is a complex task that presents a challenge for both biologists and roboticists, the latter of whom draw inspiration from the octopus in designing novel technologies within soft robotics. With this idea in mind, in this study, we used new, purposively developed methods of analysing the octopus arm in vivo to create new biologically inspired design concepts. Our measurements showed that the octopus arm can elongate by 70% in tandem with a 23% diameter reduction and exhibits an average pulling force of 40 N. The arm also exhibited a 20% mean shortening at a rate of 17.1 mm s(-1) and a longitudinal stiffening rate as high as 2 N (mm s)(-1). Using histology and ultrasounds, we investigated the functional morphology of the internal tissues, including the sinusoidal arrangement of the nerve cord and the local insertion points of the longitudinal and transverse muscle fibres. The resulting information was used to create novel design principles and specifications that can in turn be used in developing a new soft robotic arm.

  18. Methodology for designing and manufacturing complex biologically inspired soft robotic fluidic actuators: prosthetic hand case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson-Bean, E; Das, R; McDaid, A

    2016-10-31

    We present a novel methodology for the design and manufacture of complex biologically inspired soft robotic fluidic actuators. The methodology is applied to the design and manufacture of a prosthetic for the hand. Real human hands are scanned to produce a 3D model of a finger, and pneumatic networks are implemented within it to produce a biomimetic bending motion. The finger is then partitioned into material sections, and a genetic algorithm based optimization, using finite element analysis, is employed to discover the optimal material for each section. This is based on two biomimetic performance criteria. Two sets of optimizations using two material sets are performed. Promising optimized material arrangements are fabricated using two techniques to validate the optimization routine, and the fabricated and simulated results are compared. We find that the optimization is successful in producing biomimetic soft robotic fingers and that fabrication of the fingers is possible. Limitations and paths for development are discussed. This methodology can be applied for other fluidic soft robotic devices.

  19. Modelling of a biologically inspired robotic fish driven by compliant parts

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Daou, Hadi El; Salumäe, Taavi; Kruusmaa, Maarja; Chambers, Lily D; Megill, William M

    2014-01-01

    Inspired by biological swimmers such as fish, a robot composed of a rigid head, a compliant body and a rigid caudal fin was built. It has the geometrical properties of a subcarangiform swimmer of the same size. The head houses a servo-motor which actuates the compliant body and the caudal fin. It achieves this by applying a concentrated moment on a point near the compliant body base. In this paper, the dynamics of the compliant body driving the robotic fish is modelled and experimentally validated. Lighthill’s elongated body theory is used to define the hydrodynamic forces on the compliant part and Rayleigh proportional damping is used to model damping. Based on the assumed modes method, an energetic approach is used to write the equations of motion of the compliant body and to compute the relationship between the applied moment and the resulting lateral deflections. Experiments on the compliant body were carried out to validate the model predictions. The results showed that a good match was achieved between the measured and predicted deformations. A discussion of the swimming motions between the real fish and the robot is presented. (paper)

  20. A biologically inspired controller to solve the coverage problem in robotics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rañó, Iñaki; Santos, José A

    2017-06-05

    The coverage problem consists on computing a path or trajectory for a robot to pass over all the points in some free area and has applications ranging from floor cleaning to demining. Coverage is solved as a planning problem-providing theoretical validation of the solution-or through heuristic techniques which rely on experimental validation. Through a combination of theoretical results and simulations, this paper presents a novel solution to the coverage problem that exploits the chaotic behaviour of a simple biologically inspired motion controller, the Braitenberg vehicle 2b. Although chaos has been used for coverage, our approach has much less restrictive assumptions about the environment and can be implemented using on-board sensors. First, we prove theoretically that this vehicle-a well known model of animal tropotaxis-behaves as a charge in an electro-magnetic field. The motion equations can be reduced to a Hamiltonian system, and, therefore the vehicle follows quasi-periodic or chaotic trajectories, which pass arbitrarily close to any point in the work-space, i.e. it solves the coverage problem. Secondly, through a set of extensive simulations, we show that the trajectories cover regions of bounded workspaces, and full coverage is achieved when the perceptual range of the vehicle is short. We compare the performance of this new approach with different types of random motion controllers in the same bounded environments.

  1. Dynamics Analysis of Fluid-Structure Interaction for a Biologically-Inspired Biped Robot Running on Water

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Linsen Xu

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available A kinematics analysis of a biologically-inspired biped robot is carried out, and the trajectory of the robot foot is understood. For calculating the pressure distribution across a robot foot before touching the surface of water, the compression flow of air and the depression motion of the water surface are considered. The pressure model after touching the water surface has been built according to the theory of rigid body planar motion. The multi-material ALE algorithm is applied to emulate the course of the foot slapping water. The simulation results indicate that the model of the bionic robot can satisfy the water-running function. The real prototype of the robot is manufactured to test its function of running on water. When the biped robot is running on water, the average force generated by the propulsion mechanism is about 1.3N. The experimental results show that the propulsion system can satisfy the requirement of biped robot running on water.

  2. Biologically-Inspired Microrobots. Volume 3. Micro-Robot Based on Abstracted Biological Principles

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Quinn, Roger D; Ritzmann, Roy E; Morrey, Jeremy; Horchler, Andrew

    2006-01-01

    .... Mini-Whegs use four wheel-legs to run in an alternating diagonal gait. These approximately 3-inch-long robots can move at sustained speeds of over 10 body lengths per second and can run over obstacles that are taller than their leg length...

  3. Biologically Inspired Modular Neural Control for a Leg-Wheel Hybrid Robot

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Manoonpong, Poramate; Wörgötter, Florentin; Laksanacharoen, Pudit

    2014-01-01

    In this article we present modular neural control for a leg-wheel hybrid robot consisting of three legs with omnidirectional wheels. This neural control has four main modules having their functional origin in biological neural systems. A minimal recurrent control (MRC) module is for sensory signal...... processing and state memorization. Its outputs drive two front wheels while the rear wheel is controlled through a velocity regulating network (VRN) module. In parallel, a neural oscillator network module serves as a central pattern generator (CPG) controls leg movements for sidestepping. Stepping directions...... or they can serve as useful modules for other module-based neural control applications....

  4. Biologically-inspired synthetic dry adhesives for wall-climbing robots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murphy, Michael P.

    Animals such as insects, spiders, and lizards are capable of clinging to and climbing on a variety of surfaces, from rough stone to smooth silicon. Hairy microscale arrays of structures on their feet conform to surface roughness to create millions of points of contact, creating a large overall contact area. Weak intermolecular forces (van der Waals forces) between each fiber tip and the surface sum to large overall forces due to the high number of contacts. In this work we present the fabrication, characterization, and demonstration of synthetic polyurethane fibrillar adhesives inspired by these animals. Angled polymer micro-fiber arrays are fabricated and characterized. A tip modification technique is presented which enables fabrication of fibers with flat mushroom shaped tips which greatly increase the adhesion of the fibers, up to 5N/cm 2 (normal direction), and with a magnitude within the range of geckos (10 N/cm2) in the shear direction on smooth surfaces. We present a fabrication technique to create fibers with angled flat mushroom-shaped tips which replicate the directional characteristics of geckos, gripping in one direction (within the range of gecko adhesion) and releasing easily in the other. Multilevel hierarchical structures with specialized tips for roughness adaptation are also presented. Fiber hierarchies from the millimeter scale to the sub-micron scale are demonstrated, including three-level fiber fabrication with specialized tips. Hierarchical structures demonstrate up to 5 times the adhesion of an unstructured sample, and requiring up to 10 times the detachment energy. Finally, an agile, wireless, palm-sized wall climbing robot which uses the synthetic fibrillar dry adhesives to climb is presented. Waalbot , named after the van der Waals forces it uses to climb, exploits the attachment and detachment characteristics of the developed dry adhesives, capabilities include climbing smooth surfaces such as glass in any orientation on any surface slope

  5. Honeybees as a model for the study of visually guided flight, navigation, and biologically inspired robotics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srinivasan, Mandyam V

    2011-04-01

    Research over the past century has revealed the impressive capacities of the honeybee, Apis mellifera, in relation to visual perception, flight guidance, navigation, and learning and memory. These observations, coupled with the relative ease with which these creatures can be trained, and the relative simplicity of their nervous systems, have made honeybees an attractive model in which to pursue general principles of sensorimotor function in a variety of contexts, many of which pertain not just to honeybees, but several other animal species, including humans. This review begins by describing the principles of visual guidance that underlie perception of the world in three dimensions, obstacle avoidance, control of flight speed, and orchestrating smooth landings. We then consider how navigation over long distances is accomplished, with particular reference to how bees use information from the celestial compass to determine their flight bearing, and information from the movement of the environment in their eyes to gauge how far they have flown. Finally, we illustrate how some of the principles gleaned from these studies are now being used to design novel, biologically inspired algorithms for the guidance of unmanned aerial vehicles.

  6. Behavior-based obstacle avoidance capability for biologically inspired eight-legged walking robot

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Izzeldin Ibrahim Mohd; Shamsudin M Amin; Adel Ali Syed Al-Jumaily

    1999-01-01

    Behavior-based approach has proven to be useful in making mobile robot working in real world situations. Since the behaviors are responsible for managing the interaction between the robots and its environment, observing their use can be exploited to model these interactions. A real-time obstacle avoidance algorithm has been developed and implemented. This algorithm permits the detection of unknown obstacle simultaneously with the steering of the mobile robot to avoid collisions and advance toward the target. In our approach the robot is initially given a set of behavior-producing modules to choose from, and the algorithm provides a memory-based approach to dynamically adapt the selection of the behaviors according to the history of their use. We developed a set of algorithms, which uses Subsumption Architecture (SA) for controlling an eight-legged walking robot operating in closed vicinity. This paper describes a successful application of these algorithms to Oct-Ib robot and experimental results of the robot navigating in complex environment. (Author)

  7. Quadrupedal Robot Locomotion: A Biologically Inspired Approach and Its Hardware Implementation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Espinal

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available A bioinspired locomotion system for a quadruped robot is presented. Locomotion is achieved by a spiking neural network (SNN that acts as a Central Pattern Generator (CPG producing different locomotion patterns represented by their raster plots. To generate these patterns, the SNN is configured with specific parameters (synaptic weights and topologies, which were estimated by a metaheuristic method based on Christiansen Grammar Evolution (CGE. The system has been implemented and validated on two robot platforms; firstly, we tested our system on a quadruped robot and, secondly, on a hexapod one. In this last one, we simulated the case where two legs of the hexapod were amputated and its locomotion mechanism has been changed. For the quadruped robot, the control is performed by the spiking neural network implemented on an Arduino board with 35% of resource usage. In the hexapod robot, we used Spartan 6 FPGA board with only 3% of resource usage. Numerical results show the effectiveness of the proposed system in both cases.

  8. Neurobiologically inspired mobile robot navigation and planning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mathias Quoy

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available After a short review of biologically inspired navigation architectures, mainly relying on modeling the hippocampal anatomy, or at least some of its functions, we present a navigation and planning model for mobile robots. This architecture is based on a model of the hippocampal and prefrontal interactions. In particular, the system relies on the definition of a new cell type “transition cells” that encompasses traditional “place cells”.

  9. Dynamical analysis and development of a biologically inspired SMA caterpillar robot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daily-Diamond, Christopher A; Novelia, Alyssa; O'Reilly, Oliver M

    2017-09-26

    With the goal of robustly designing and fabricating a soft robot based on a caterpillar featuring shape memory alloy (SMA) actuators, analytical and numerical models for a soft robot were created based on the forward crawling motion of the Manduca sexta caterpillar. The analytical model features a rod theory and the mechanics of undulation were analyzed using a motion pattern based on the 'Witch of Agnesi' curve. Complementing these models, experiments on a SMA actuator sample were performed in order to determine its flexural rigidity and curvature as a function of the actuation voltage. A series of these actuators can be modeled as a system of rigid bodies connected by torsional springs. As these bodies are actuated according to the motion pattern based on the individual caterpillar segments, ground contact forces are calculated and analyzed to determine the requirements of successful forward locomotion. The energetics of the analytical and numerical models are then compared and discussed.

  10. A survey of bio-inspired compliant legged robot designs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhou Xiaodong; Bi Shusheng

    2012-01-01

    The roles of biological springs in vertebrate animals and their implementations in compliant legged robots offer significant advantages over the rigid legged ones in certain types of scenarios. A large number of robotics institutes have been attempting to work in conjunction with biologists and incorporated these principles into the design of biologically inspired robots. The motivation of this review is to investigate the most published compliant legged robots and categorize them according to the types of compliant elements adopted in their mechanical structures. Based on the typical robots investigated, the trade-off between each category is summarized. In addition, the most significant performances of these robots are compared quantitatively, and multiple available solutions for the future compliant legged robot design are suggested. Finally, the design challenges for compliant legged robots are analysed. This review will provide useful guidance for robotic designers in creating new designs by inheriting the virtues of those successful robots according to the specific tasks. (topical review)

  11. Towards Bio-Inspired Chromatic Behaviours in Surveillance Robots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sampath Kumar Karutaa Gnaniar

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The field of Robotics is ever growing at the same time as posing enormous challenges. Numerous works has been done in biologically inspired robotics emulating models, systems and elements of nature for the purpose of solving traditional robotics problems. Chromatic behaviours are abundant in nature across a variety of living species to achieve camouflage, signaling, and temperature regulation. The ability of these creatures to successfully blend in with their environment and communicate by changing their colour is the fundamental inspiration for our research work. In this paper, we present dwarf chameleon inspired chromatic behaviour in the context of an autonomous surveillance robot, “PACHONDHI”. In our experiments, we successfully validated the ability of the robot to autonomously change its colour in relation to the terrain that it is traversing for maximizing detectability to friendly security agents and minimizing exposure to hostile agents, as well as to communicate with fellow cooperating robots.

  12. Continuum robot arms inspired by cephalopods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Ian D.; Dawson, Darren M.; Flash, Tamar; Grasso, Frank W.; Hanlon, Roger T.; Hochner, Binyamin; Kier, William M.; Pagano, Christopher C.; Rahn, Christopher D.; Zhang, Qiming M.

    2005-05-01

    In this paper, we describe our recent results in the development of a new class of soft, continuous backbone ("continuum") robot manipulators. Our work is strongly motivated by the dexterous appendages found in cephalopods, particularly the arms and suckers of octopus, and the arms and tentacles of squid. Our ongoing investigation of these animals reveals interesting and unexpected functional aspects of their structure and behavior. The arrangement and dynamic operation of muscles and connective tissue observed in the arms of a variety of octopus species motivate the underlying design approach for our soft manipulators. These artificial manipulators feature biomimetic actuators, including artificial muscles based on both electro-active polymers (EAP) and pneumatic (McKibben) muscles. They feature a "clean" continuous backbone design, redundant degrees of freedom, and exhibit significant compliance that provides novel operational capacities during environmental interaction and object manipulation. The unusual compliance and redundant degrees of freedom provide strong potential for application to delicate tasks in cluttered and/or unstructured environments. Our aim is to endow these compliant robotic mechanisms with the diverse and dexterous grasping behavior observed in octopuses. To this end, we are conducting fundamental research into the manipulation tactics, sensory biology, and neural control of octopuses. This work in turn leads to novel approaches to motion planning and operator interfaces for the robots. The paper describes the above efforts, along with the results of our development of a series of continuum tentacle-like robots, demonstrating the unique abilities of biologically-inspired design.

  13. Human Brain inspired Artificial Intelligence & Developmental Robotics: A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suresh Kumar

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Along with the developments in the field of the robotics, fascinating contributions and developments can be seen in the field of Artificial intelligence (AI. In this paper we will discuss about the developments is the field of artificial intelligence focusing learning algorithms inspired from the field of Biology, particularly large scale brain simulations, and developmental Psychology. We will focus on the emergence of the Developmental robotics and its significance in the field of AI.

  14. RoboticsInspired from Nature

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huosheng Hu

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available It is my great pleasure to welcome you to a new open access journal, Robotics, which is dedicated to both the foundations of artificial intelligence, bio-mechanics, mechatronics and control theories, and the real-world applications of robotic perception, cognition and actions. This includes the innovative scientific trends, and discovery resulting from solving new challenges in the field of robotics. Its open access and rapid dissemination are the unique features separating this journal from all existing journals dedicated to robotics. [...

  15. Paradigms for biologically inspired design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lenau, T. A.; Metzea, A.-L.; Hesselberg, T.

    2018-01-01

    engineering, medical engineering, nanotechnology, photonics,environmental protection and agriculture. However, a major obstacle for the wider use of biologically inspired design isthe knowledge barrier that exist between the application engineers that have insight into how to design suitable productsand......Biologically inspired design is attracting increasing interest since it offers access to a huge biological repository of wellproven design principles that can be used for developing new and innovative products. Biological phenomena can inspireproduct innovation in as diverse areas as mechanical...... the biologists with detailed knowledge and experience in understanding how biological organisms function in theirenvironment. The biologically inspired design process can therefore be approached using different design paradigmsdepending on the dominant opportunities, challenges and knowledge characteristics...

  16. Deep ART Neural Model for Biologically Inspired Episodic Memory and Its Application to Task Performance of Robots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Gyeong-Moon; Yoo, Yong-Ho; Kim, Deok-Hwa; Kim, Jong-Hwan

    2017-06-26

    Robots are expected to perform smart services and to undertake various troublesome or difficult tasks in the place of humans. Since these human-scale tasks consist of a temporal sequence of events, robots need episodic memory to store and retrieve the sequences to perform the tasks autonomously in similar situations. As episodic memory, in this paper we propose a novel Deep adaptive resonance theory (ART) neural model and apply it to the task performance of the humanoid robot, Mybot, developed in the Robot Intelligence Technology Laboratory at KAIST. Deep ART has a deep structure to learn events, episodes, and even more like daily episodes. Moreover, it can retrieve the correct episode from partial input cues robustly. To demonstrate the effectiveness and applicability of the proposed Deep ART, experiments are conducted with the humanoid robot, Mybot, for performing the three tasks of arranging toys, making cereal, and disposing of garbage.

  17. A bio-inspired electrocommunication system for small underwater robots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Wei; Liu, Jindong; Xie, Guangming; Wen, Li; Zhang, Jianwei

    2017-03-29

    Weakly electric fishes (Gymnotid and Mormyrid) use an electric field to communicate efficiently (termed electrocommunication) in the turbid waters of confined spaces where other communication modalities fail. Inspired by this biological phenomenon, we design an artificial electrocommunication system for small underwater robots and explore the capabilities of such an underwater robotic communication system. An analytical model for electrocommunication is derived to predict the effect of the key parameters such as electrode distance and emitter current of the system on the communication performance. According to this model, a low-dissipation, and small-sized electrocommunication system is proposed and integrated into a small robotic fish. We characterize the communication performance of the robot in still water, flowing water, water with obstacles and natural water conditions. The results show that underwater robots are able to communicate electrically at a speed of around 1 k baud within about 3 m with a low power consumption (less than 1 W). In addition, we demonstrate that two leader-follower robots successfully achieve motion synchronization through electrocommunication in the three-dimensional underwater space, indicating that this bio-inspired electrocommunication system is a promising setup for the interaction of small underwater robots.

  18. The VIPER project (Visualization Integration Platform for Exploration Research): a biologically inspired autonomous reconfigurable robotic platform for diverse unstructured environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schubert, Oliver J.; Tolle, Charles R.

    2004-09-01

    Over the last decade the world has seen numerous autonomous vehicle programs. Wheels and track designs are the basis for many of these vehicles. This is primarily due to four main reasons: a vast preexisting knowledge base for these designs, energy efficiency of power sources, scalability of actuators, and the lack of control systems technologies for handling alternate highly complex distributed systems. Though large efforts seek to improve the mobility of these vehicles, many limitations still exist for these systems within unstructured environments, e.g. limited mobility within industrial and nuclear accident sites where existing plant configurations have been extensively changed. These unstructured operational environments include missions for exploration, reconnaissance, and emergency recovery of objects within reconfigured or collapsed structures, e.g. bombed buildings. More importantly, these environments present a clear and present danger for direct human interactions during the initial phases of recovery operations. Clearly, the current classes of autonomous vehicles are incapable of performing in these environments. Thus the next generation of designs must include highly reconfigurable and flexible autonomous robotic platforms. This new breed of autonomous vehicles will be both highly flexible and environmentally adaptable. Presented in this paper is one of the most successful designs from nature, the snake-eel-worm (SEW). This design implements shape memory alloy (SMA) actuators which allow for scaling of the robotic SEW designs from sub-micron scale to heavy industrial implementations without major conceptual redesigns as required in traditional hydraulic, pneumatic, or motor driven systems. Autonomous vehicles based on the SEW design posses the ability to easily move between air based environments and fluid based environments with limited or no reconfiguration. Under a SEW designed vehicle, one not only achieves vastly improved maneuverability within a

  19. Stingray-inspired robot with simply actuated intermediate motion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neely, Lincoln; Gaiennie, Jack; Noble, Nick; Erickson, Jonathan C.

    2016-04-01

    Batoids, or rays, utilize unique forms of locomotion that may offer more efficient techniques of motorized propulsion in various marine environments. We present a novel biomimetic engineering design and assembly of a stingray-inspired robot swimmer. The robots locomotion mimics the Dasyatis americana, or southern stingray, whose distinction among rays is its intermediate motion, characterized by sweeping strokes that propagate between 1/2-1 wavelength of the fin profile in the posterior direction. Though oscillatory ( wavelengths) ray-based robots have been created, this project demonstrates new engineering possibilities in what is, to the best of our knowledge, the first intermediately propelled batoid-based robot. The robots fins were made of silicone rubber, cast in a 3-D printed mold, with wingspan of 42 cm (1/2 - 1/5 scale for males and females, respectively, scale of model organism). Two anteriorly placed servomotors per fin were used, all controlled by one wirelessly enabled Arduino microcontroller. Each servomotor oscillated a flexible rod with cylindrical joint, whose frequency, speed, and front-back phase delay were user-programmed over wireless connection. During free-swimming tests, the fin profile developed about 0.8 wavelength, qualifying for successful mimicry of its biological inspiration. The robot satisfactorily maintained straight-line motion, reaching average peak velocity of 9.4+/-1.0 cm/s (0.27-0.03 body lengths/second) at its optimum flapping frequency of 1.4 Hz. This is in the same order of magnitude of speed normalized to body length achieved by others in two recent batoid-based projects. In summary, our robot performed intermediate stingray locomotion with relatively fewer components, which reveals robust potential for innovation of the simple intermediate batoid-based robot swimmer.

  20. A locust-inspired miniature jumping robot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaitsev, Valentin; Gvirsman, Omer; Ben Hanan, Uri; Weiss, Avi; Ayali, Amir; Kosa, Gabor

    2015-11-25

    Unmanned ground vehicles are mostly wheeled, tracked, or legged. These locomotion mechanisms have a limited ability to traverse rough terrain and obstacles that are higher than the robot's center of mass. In order to improve the mobility of small robots it is necessary to expand the variety of their motion gaits. Jumping is one of nature's solutions to the challenge of mobility in difficult terrain. The desert locust is the model for the presented bio-inspired design of a jumping mechanism for a small mobile robot. The basic mechanism is similar to that of the semilunar process in the hind legs of the locust, and is based on the cocking of a torsional spring by wrapping a tendon-like wire around the shaft of a miniature motor. In this study we present the jumping mechanism design, and the manufacturing and performance analysis of two demonstrator prototypes. The most advanced jumping robot demonstrator is power autonomous, weighs 23 gr, and is capable of jumping to a height of 3.35 m, covering a distance of 1.37 m.

  1. Biological Soft Robotics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feinberg, Adam W

    2015-01-01

    In nature, nanometer-scale molecular motors are used to generate force within cells for diverse processes from transcription and transport to muscle contraction. This adaptability and scalability across wide temporal, spatial, and force regimes have spurred the development of biological soft robotic systems that seek to mimic and extend these capabilities. This review describes how molecular motors are hierarchically organized into larger-scale structures in order to provide a basic understanding of how these systems work in nature and the complexity and functionality we hope to replicate in biological soft robotics. These span the subcellular scale to macroscale, and this article focuses on the integration of biological components with synthetic materials, coupled with bioinspired robotic design. Key examples include nanoscale molecular motor-powered actuators, microscale bacteria-controlled devices, and macroscale muscle-powered robots that grasp, walk, and swim. Finally, the current challenges and future opportunities in the field are addressed.

  2. Nasa's Ant-Inspired Swarmie Robots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leucht, Kurt W.

    2016-01-01

    As humans push further beyond the grasp of earth, robotic missions in advance of human missions will play an increasingly important role. These robotic systems will find and retrieve valuable resources as part of an in-situ resource utilization (ISRU) strategy. They will need to be highly autonomous while maintaining high task performance levels. NASA Kennedy Space Center has teamed up with the Biological Computation Lab at the University of New Mexico to create a swarm of small, low-cost, autonomous robots to be used as a ground-based research platform for ISRU missions. The behavior of the robot swarm mimics the central-place foraging strategy of ants to find and collect resources in a previously unmapped environment and return those resources to a central site. This talk will guide the audience through the Swarmie robot project from its conception by students in a New Mexico research lab to its robot trials in an outdoor parking lot at NASA. The software technologies and techniques used on the project will be discussed, as well as various challenges and solutions that were encountered by the development team along the way.

  3. From biologically-inspired physics to physics-inspired biology From biologically-inspired physics to physics-inspired biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kornyshev, Alexei A.

    2010-10-01

    massively sponsor this DNA conference at the ICTP. The conference was generously co-sponsored by the Wellcome Trust (UK). It comprised approximately 60 talks on topically focused sessions devoted to: DNA mechanics DNA structure, interactions and aggregation Recognition of homologous genes Conformational dynamics, supercoiling and packing DNA compactization in viruses DNA-protein interaction and recognition DNA in confinement (pores and vesicles) Smart DNA (robotics, nano-architectures, switches, sensors and DNA electronics) The success of the conference was that it was not a meeting of a club of physicists interested in biology, but a meeting of physicists, carrying out important work widely published not only in physical but also biological journals, with the leading biologists who, personally, were keenly interested in learning what novelties physical methods and existing knowledge could offer them. They were equally eager to explain to physicists and mathematicians the most challenging paradigms of molecular biology research. The conference was opened by two inspiring high-impact talks, from a Director of the European Molecular Genetics Center in Trieste, Arturo Falaschi, the Editor of HFSP Journal (who sadly just passed away last month), and from a scientist of the next generation, Lynn Zechiedrich, Professor of Baylor Medical School and former co-worker of the late Nick Cozzarelly. Both showed astounding manifestations of the polymeric behavior of DNA, where physics is eagerly awaited like rain in the desert. However, at the whole conference about 40% of lectures were delivered by biologists. In this short article it is not possible to cover even the most exciting presentations, and I refer interested readers to the website [5] where further information can be found. I will outline below just a couple of issues. The conference revealed big progress in understanding the details of DNA mechanics, including its local sequence-dependent elastic properties. Progress was

  4. Bio-inspired step-climbing in a hexapod robot

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chou, Ya-Cheng; Yu, Wei-Shun; Huang, Ke-Jung; Lin, Pei-Chun

    2012-01-01

    Inspired by the observation that the cockroach changes from a tripod gait to a different gait for climbing high steps, we report on the design and implementation of a novel, fully autonomous step-climbing maneuver, which enables a RHex-style hexapod robot to reliably climb a step up to 230% higher than the length of its leg. Similar to the climbing strategy most used by cockroaches, the proposed maneuver is composed of two stages. The first stage is the ‘rearing stage,’ inclining the body so the front side of the body is raised and it is easier for the front legs to catch the top of the step, followed by the ‘rising stage,’ maneuvering the body's center of mass to the top of the step. Two infrared range sensors are installed on the front of the robot to detect the presence of the step and its orientation relative to the robot's heading, so that the robot can perform automatic gait transition, from walking to step-climbing, as well as correct its initial tilt approaching posture. An inclinometer is utilized to measure body inclination and to compute step height, thus enabling the robot to adjust its gait automatically, in real time, and to climb steps of different heights and depths successfully. The algorithm is applicable for the robot to climb various rectangular obstacles, including a narrow bar, a bar and a step (i.e. a bar of infinite width). The performance of the algorithm is evaluated experimentally, and the comparison of climbing strategies and climbing behaviors in biological and robotic systems is discussed. (paper)

  5. Biologically-inspired soft exosuit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asbeck, Alan T; Dyer, Robert J; Larusson, Arnar F; Walsh, Conor J

    2013-06-01

    In this paper, we present the design and evaluation of a novel soft cable-driven exosuit that can apply forces to the body to assist walking. Unlike traditional exoskeletons which contain rigid framing elements, the soft exosuit is worn like clothing, yet can generate moments at the ankle and hip with magnitudes of 18% and 30% of those naturally generated by the body during walking, respectively. Our design uses geared motors to pull on Bowden cables connected to the suit near the ankle. The suit has the advantages over a traditional exoskeleton in that the wearer's joints are unconstrained by external rigid structures, and the worn part of the suit is extremely light, which minimizes the suit's unintentional interference with the body's natural biomechanics. However, a soft suit presents challenges related to actuation force transfer and control, since the body is compliant and cannot support large pressures comfortably. We discuss the design of the suit and actuation system, including principles by which soft suits can transfer force to the body effectively and the biological inspiration for the design. For a soft exosuit, an important design parameter is the combined effective stiffness of the suit and its interface to the wearer. We characterize the exosuit's effective stiffness, and present preliminary results from it generating assistive torques to a subject during walking. We envision such an exosuit having broad applicability for assisting healthy individuals as well as those with muscle weakness.

  6. A survey of snake-inspired robot designs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hopkins, James K; Spranklin, Brent W; Gupta, Satyandra K

    2009-01-01

    Body undulation used by snakes and the physical architecture of a snake body may offer significant benefits over typical legged or wheeled locomotion designs in certain types of scenarios. A large number of research groups have developed snake-inspired robots to exploit these benefits. The purpose of this review is to report different types of snake-inspired robot designs and categorize them based on their main characteristics. For each category, we discuss their relative advantages and disadvantages. This review will assist in familiarizing a newcomer to the field with the existing designs and their distinguishing features. We hope that by studying existing robots, future designers will be able to create new designs by adopting features from successful robots. The review also summarizes the design challenges associated with the further advancement of the field and deploying snake-inspired robots in practice. (topical review)

  7. Biologically inspired toys using artificial muscles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Y.

    2001-01-01

    Recent developments in electroactive polymers, so-called artificial muscles, could one day be used to make bionics possible. Meanwhile, as this technology evolves novel mechanisms are expected to emerge that are biologically inspired.

  8. Design and Dynamic Model of a Frog-inspired Swimming Robot Powered by Pneumatic Muscles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Ji-Zhuang; Zhang, Wei; Kong, Peng-Cheng; Cai, He-Gao; Liu, Gang-Feng

    2017-09-01

    Pneumatic muscles with similar characteristics to biological muscles have been widely used in robots, and thus are promising drivers for frog inspired robots. However, the application and nonlinearity of the pneumatic system limit the advance. On the basis of the swimming mechanism of the frog, a frog-inspired robot based on pneumatic muscles is developed. To realize the independent tasks by the robot, a pneumatic system with internal chambers, micro air pump, and valves is implemented. The micro pump is used to maintain the pressure difference between the source and exhaust chambers. The pneumatic muscles are controlled by high-speed switch valves which can reduce the robot cost, volume, and mass. A dynamic model of the pneumatic system is established for the simulation to estimate the system, including the chamber, muscle, and pneumatic circuit models. The robot design is verified by the robot swimming experiments and the dynamic model is verified through the experiments and simulations of the pneumatic system. The simulation results are compared to analyze the functions of the source pressure, internal volume of the muscle, and circuit flow rate which is proved the main factor that limits the response of muscle pressure. The proposed research provides the application of the pneumatic muscles in the frog inspired robot and the pneumatic model to study muscle controller.

  9. Artificial heartbeat: design and fabrication of a biologically inspired pump

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Walters, Peter; Stephenson, Robert; Lewis, Amy; Stinchcombe, Andrew; Ieropoulos, Ioannis

    2013-01-01

    We present a biologically inspired actuator exhibiting a novel pumping action. The design of the ‘artificial heartbeat’ actuator is inspired by physical principles derived from the structure and function of the human heart. The actuator employs NiTi artificial muscles and is powered by electrical energy generated by microbial fuel cells (MFCs). We describe the design and fabrication of the actuator and report the results of tests conducted to characterize its performance. This is the first artificial muscle-driven pump to be powered by MFCs fed on human urine. Results are presented in terms of the peak pumping pressure generated by the actuator, as well as for the volume of fluid transferred, when the actuator was powered by energy stored in a capacitor bank, which was charged by 24 MFCs fed on urine. The results demonstrate the potential for the artificial heartbeat actuator to be employed as a fluid circulation pump in future generations of MFC-powered robots (‘EcoBots’) that extract energy from organic waste. We also envisage that the actuator could in the future form part of a bio-robotic artwork or ‘bio-automaton’ that could help increase public awareness of research in robotics, bio-energy and biologically inspired design. (paper)

  10. Biologically Inspired Technology Using Electroactive Polymers (EAP)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph

    2006-01-01

    Evolution allowed nature to introduce highly effective biological mechanisms that are incredible inspiration for innovation. Humans have always made efforts to imitate nature's inventions and we are increasingly making advances that it becomes significantly easier to imitate, copy, and adapt biological methods, processes and systems. This brought us to the ability to create technology that is far beyond the simple mimicking of nature. Having better tools to understand and to implement nature's principles we are now equipped like never before to be inspired by nature and to employ our tools in far superior ways. Effectively, by bio-inspiration we can have a better view and value of nature capability while studying its models to learn what can be extracted, copied or adapted. Using electroactive polymers (EAP) as artificial muscles is adding an important element to the development of biologically inspired technologies.

  11. Biology-Inspired Autonomous Control

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-08-31

    insect brain, allow these animals to fly with damaged wings, order of body mass payloads (e.g., foraging bees with a load of pollen , blood satiated...The research focus addressed two broad, complementary research areas : autonomous systems concepts inspired by the behavior and neurobiology...UL 46 19b. TELEPHONE NUMBER (include area code) 850 883-1887 Standard Form 298 (Rev. 8-98) Prescribed by ANSI Std. Z39.18 iii Table of

  12. The human hand as an inspiration for robot hand development

    CERN Document Server

    Santos, Veronica

    2014-01-01

    “The Human Hand as an Inspiration for Robot Hand Development” presents an edited collection of authoritative contributions in the area of robot hands. The results described in the volume are expected to lead to more robust, dependable, and inexpensive distributed systems such as those endowed with complex and advanced sensing, actuation, computation, and communication capabilities. The twenty-four chapters discuss the field of robotic grasping and manipulation viewed in light of the human hand’s capabilities and push the state-of-the-art in robot hand design and control. Topics discussed include human hand biomechanics, neural control, sensory feedback and perception, and robotic grasp and manipulation. This book will be useful for researchers from diverse areas such as robotics, biomechanics, neuroscience, and anthropologists.

  13. A tracked robot with novel bio-inspired passive "legs".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Bo; Jing, Xingjian

    2017-01-01

    For track-based robots, an important aspect is the suppression design, which determines the trafficability and comfort of the whole system. The trafficability limits the robot's working capability, and the riding comfort limits the robot's working effectiveness, especially with some sensitive instruments mounted on or operated. To these aims, a track-based robot equipped with a novel passive bio-inspired suspension is designed and studied systematically in this paper. Animal or insects have very special leg or limb structures which are good for motion control and adaptable to different environments. Inspired by this, a new track-based robot is designed with novel "legs" for connecting the loading wheels to the robot body. Each leg is designed with passive structures and can achieve very high loading capacity but low dynamic stiffness such that the robot can move on rough ground similar to a multi-leg animal or insect. Therefore, the trafficability and riding comfort can be significantly improved without losing loading capacity. The new track-based robot can be well applied to various engineering tasks for providing a stable moving platform of high mobility, better trafficability and excellent loading capacity.

  14. On the role of emotion in biological and robotic autonomy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ziemke, Tom

    2008-02-01

    This paper reviews some of the differences between notions of biological and robotic autonomy, and how these differences have been reflected in discussions of embodiment, grounding and other concepts in AI and autonomous robotics. Furthermore, the relations between homeostasis, emotion and embodied cognition are discussed as well as recent proposals to model their interplay in robots, which reflects a commitment to a multi-tiered affectively/emotionally embodied view of mind that takes organismic embodiment more serious than usually done in biologically inspired robotics.

  15. Biologically inspired technologies in NASA's morphing project

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGowan, Anna-Maria R.; Cox, David E.; Lazos, Barry S.; Waszak, Martin R.; Raney, David L.; Siochi, Emilie J.; Pao, S. Paul

    2003-07-01

    For centuries, biology has provided fertile ground for hypothesis, discovery, and inspiration. Time-tested methods used in nature are being used as a basis for several research studies conducted at the NASA Langley Research Center as a part of Morphing Project, which develops and assesses breakthrough vehicle technologies. These studies range from low drag airfoil design guided by marine and avian morphologies to soaring techniques inspired by birds and the study of small flexible wing vehicles. Biology often suggests unconventional yet effective approaches such as non-planar wings, dynamic soaring, exploiting aeroelastic effects, collaborative control, flapping, and fibrous active materials. These approaches and other novel technologies for future flight vehicles are being studied in NASA's Morphing Project. This paper will discuss recent findings in the aeronautics-based, biologically-inspired research in the project.

  16. Bio-inspired aquatic robotics by untethered piezohydroelastic actuation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cen, L; Erturk, A

    2013-01-01

    This paper investigates fish-like aquatic robotics using flexible bimorphs made of macro-fiber composite (MFC) piezoelectric laminates for carangiform locomotion. In addition to noiseless and efficient actuation over a range of frequencies, geometric scalability, and simple design, bimorph propulsors made of MFCs offer a balance between the actuation force and velocity response for performance enhancement in bio-inspired swimming. The experimental component of the presented work focuses on the characterization of an elastically constrained MFC bimorph propulsor for thrust generation in quiescent water as well as the development of a robotic fish prototype combining a microcontroller and a printed-circuit-board amplifier to generate high actuation voltage for untethered locomotion. From the theoretical standpoint, a distributed-parameter electroelastic model including the hydrodynamic effects and actuator dynamics is coupled with the elongated-body theory for predicting the mean thrust in quiescent water. In-air and underwater experiments are performed to verify the incorporation of hydrodynamic effects in the linear actuation regime. For electroelastically nonlinear actuation levels, experimentally obtained underwater vibration response is coupled with the elongated-body theory to predict the thrust output. The measured mean thrust levels in quiescent water (on the order of ∼10 mN) compare favorably with thrust levels of biological fish. An untethered robotic fish prototype that employs a single bimorph fin (caudal fin) for straight swimming and turning motions is developed and tested in free locomotion. A swimming speed of 0.3 body-length/second (7.5 cm s −1 swimming speed for 24.3 cm body length) is achieved at 5 Hz for a non-optimized main body-propulsor bimorph combination under a moderate actuation voltage level. (paper)

  17. Biologically Inspired Micro-Flight Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raney, David L.; Waszak, Martin R.

    2003-01-01

    Natural fliers demonstrate a diverse array of flight capabilities, many of which are poorly understood. NASA has established a research project to explore and exploit flight technologies inspired by biological systems. One part of this project focuses on dynamic modeling and control of micro aerial vehicles that incorporate flexible wing structures inspired by natural fliers such as insects, hummingbirds and bats. With a vast number of potential civil and military applications, micro aerial vehicles represent an emerging sector of the aerospace market. This paper describes an ongoing research activity in which mechanization and control concepts for biologically inspired micro aerial vehicles are being explored. Research activities focusing on a flexible fixed- wing micro aerial vehicle design and a flapping-based micro aerial vehicle concept are presented.

  18. Biology-inspired AMO physics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mathur, Deepak

    2015-01-01

    This Topical Review presents an overview of increasingly robust interconnects that are being established between atomic, molecular and optical (AMO) physics and the life sciences. AMO physics, outgrowing its historical role as a facilitator—a provider of optical methodologies, for instance—now seeks to partner biology in its quest to link systems-level descriptions of biological entities to insights based on molecular processes. Of course, perspectives differ when AMO physicists and biologists consider various processes. For instance, while AMO physicists link molecular properties and dynamics to potential energy surfaces, these have to give way to energy landscapes in considerations of protein dynamics. But there are similarities also: tunnelling and non-adiabatic transitions occur both in protein dynamics and in molecular dynamics. We bring to the fore some such differences and similarities; we consider imaging techniques based on AMO concepts, like 4D fluorescence microscopy which allows access to the dynamics of cellular processes, multiphoton microscopy which offers a built-in confocality, and microscopy with femtosecond laser beams to saturate the suppression of fluorescence in spatially controlled fashion so as to circumvent the diffraction limit. Beyond imaging, AMO physics contributes with optical traps that probe the mechanical and dynamical properties of single ‘live’ cells, highlighting differences between healthy and diseased cells. Trap methodologies have also begun to probe the dynamics governing of neural stem cells adhering to each other to form neurospheres and, with squeezed light to probe sub-diffusive motion of yeast cells. Strong field science contributes not only by providing a source of energetic electrons and γ-rays via laser-plasma accelerations schemes, but also via filamentation and supercontinuum generation, enabling mainstream collision physics into play in diverse processes like DNA damage induced by low-energy collisions to

  19. Biology-inspired AMO physics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mathur, Deepak

    2015-01-01

    This Topical Review presents an overview of increasingly robust interconnects that are being established between atomic, molecular and optical (AMO) physics and the life sciences. AMO physics, outgrowing its historical role as a facilitator—a provider of optical methodologies, for instance—now seeks to partner biology in its quest to link systems-level descriptions of biological entities to insights based on molecular processes. Of course, perspectives differ when AMO physicists and biologists consider various processes. For instance, while AMO physicists link molecular properties and dynamics to potential energy surfaces, these have to give way to energy landscapes in considerations of protein dynamics. But there are similarities also: tunnelling and non-adiabatic transitions occur both in protein dynamics and in molecular dynamics. We bring to the fore some such differences and similarities; we consider imaging techniques based on AMO concepts, like 4D fluorescence microscopy which allows access to the dynamics of cellular processes, multiphoton microscopy which offers a built-in confocality, and microscopy with femtosecond laser beams to saturate the suppression of fluorescence in spatially controlled fashion so as to circumvent the diffraction limit. Beyond imaging, AMO physics contributes with optical traps that probe the mechanical and dynamical properties of single ‘live’ cells, highlighting differences between healthy and diseased cells. Trap methodologies have also begun to probe the dynamics governing of neural stem cells adhering to each other to form neurospheres and, with squeezed light to probe sub-diffusive motion of yeast cells. Strong field science contributes not only by providing a source of energetic electrons and γ-rays via laser-plasma accelerations schemes, but also via filamentation and supercontinuum generation, enabling mainstream collision physics into play in diverse processes like DNA damage induced by low-energy collisions to

  20. Holarchical Systems and Emotional Holons : Biologically-Inspired System Designs for Control of Autonomous Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ippolito, Corey; Plice, Laura; Pisanich, Greg

    2003-01-01

    The BEES (Bio-inspired Engineering for Exploration Systems) for Mars project at NASA Ames Research Center has the goal of developing bio-inspired flight control strategies to enable aerial explorers for Mars scientific investigations. This paper presents a summary of our ongoing research into biologically inspired system designs for control of unmanned autonomous aerial vehicle communities for Mars exploration. First, we present cooperative design considerations for robotic explorers based on the holarchical nature of biological systems and communities. Second, an outline of an architecture for cognitive decision making and control of individual robotic explorers is presented, modeled after the emotional nervous system of cognitive biological systems. Keywords: Holarchy, Biologically Inspired, Emotional UAV Flight Control

  1. Robot fish bio-inspired fishlike underwater robots

    CERN Document Server

    Li, Zheng; Youcef-Toumi, Kamal; Alvarado, Pablo

    2015-01-01

    This book provides a comprehensive coverage on robot fish including design, modeling and optimization, control, autonomous control and applications. It gathers contributions by the leading researchers in the area. Readers will find the book very useful for designing and building robot fish, not only in theory but also in practice. Moreover, the book discusses various important issues for future research and development, including design methodology, control methodology, and autonomous control strategy. This book is intended for researchers and graduate students in the fields of robotics, ocean engineering and related areas.

  2. Biologically Inspired Intercellular Slot Synchronization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander Tyrrell

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available The present article develops a decentralized interbase station slot synchronization algorithm suitable for cellular mobile communication systems. The proposed cellular firefly synchronization (CelFSync algorithm is derived from the theory of pulse-coupled oscillators, common to describe synchronization phenomena in biological systems, such as the spontaneous synchronization of fireflies. In order to maintain synchronization among base stations (BSs, even when there is no direct link between adjacent BSs, some selected user terminals (UTs participate in the network synchronization process. Synchronization emerges by exchanging two distinct synchronization words, one transmitted by BSs and the other by active UTs, without any a priori assumption on the initial timing misalignments of BSs and UTs. In large-scale networks with inter-BS site distances up to a few kilometers, propagation delays severely affect the attainable timing accuracy of CelFSync. We show that by an appropriate combination of CelFSync with the timing advance procedure, which aligns uplink transmission of UTs to arrive simultaneously at the BS, a timing accuracy within a fraction of the inter-BS propagation delay is retained.

  3. EAP artificial muscle actuators for bio-inspired intelligent social robotics (Conference Presentation)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanson, David F.

    2017-04-01

    Bio-inspired intelligent robots are coming of age in both research and industry, propelling market growth for robots and A.I. However, conventional motors limit bio-inspired robotics. EAP actuators and sensors could improve the simplicity, compliance, physical scaling, and offer bio-inspired advantages in robotic locomotion, grasping and manipulation, and social expressions. For EAP actuators to realize their transformative potential, further innovations are needed: the actuators must be robust, fast, powerful, manufacturable, and affordable. This presentation surveys progress, opportunities, and challenges in the author's latest work in social robots and EAP actuators, and proposes a roadmap for EAP actuators in bio-inspired intelligent robotics.

  4. Multi-Locomotion Robotic Systems New Concepts of Bio-inspired Robotics

    CERN Document Server

    Fukuda, Toshio; Sekiyama, Kosuke; Aoyama, Tadayoshi

    2012-01-01

    Nowadays, multiple attention have been paid on a robot working in the human living environment, such as in the field of medical, welfare, entertainment and so on. Various types of researches are being conducted actively in a variety of fields such as artificial intelligence, cognitive engineering, sensor- technology, interfaces and motion control. In the future, it is expected to realize super high functional human-like robot by integrating technologies in various fields including these types of researches. The book represents new developments and advances in the field of bio-inspired robotics research introducing the state of the art, the idea of multi-locomotion robotic system to implement the diversity of animal motion. It covers theoretical and computational aspects of Passive Dynamic Autonomous Control (PDAC), robot motion control, multi legged walking and climbing as well as brachiation focusing concrete robot systems, components and applications. In addition, gorilla type robot systems are described as...

  5. Biological Inspiration for Agile Autonomous Air Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    2007-11-01

    half of one wing, bees with legs packed with pollen , butterflies or moths with torn and frayed wings likewise are capable of apparently normal flight...technologies. To appreciate this, consider a not unreasonable extension of a wide area autonomous search (WAAS) munition operational scenario. Here...detect and destroy missile launchers that are operating in the back alleys of an urban areas or search Evers, J.H. (2007) Biological Inspiration for Agile

  6. Biologically inspired coupled antenna beampattern design

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Akcakaya, Murat; Nehorai, Arye, E-mail: makcak2@ese.wustl.ed, E-mail: nehorai@ese.wustl.ed [Department of Electrical and Systems Engineering, Washington University in St Louis, St Louis, MO 63130 (United States)

    2010-12-15

    We propose to design a small-size transmission-coupled antenna array, and corresponding radiation pattern, having high performance inspired by the female Ormia ochracea's coupled ears. For reproduction purposes, the female Ormia is able to locate male crickets' call accurately despite the small distance between its ears compared with the incoming wavelength. This phenomenon has been explained by the mechanical coupling between the Ormia's ears, which has been modeled by a pair of differential equations. In this paper, we first solve these differential equations governing the Ormia ochracea's ear response, and convert the response to the pre-specified radio frequencies. We then apply the converted response of the biological coupling in the array factor of a uniform linear array composed of finite-length dipole antennas, and also include the undesired electromagnetic coupling due to the proximity of the elements. Moreover, we propose an algorithm to optimally choose the biologically inspired coupling for maximum array performance. In our numerical examples, we compute the radiation intensity of the designed system for binomial and uniform ordinary end-fire arrays, and demonstrate the improvement in the half-power beamwidth, sidelobe suppression and directivity of the radiation pattern due to the biologically inspired coupling.

  7. Soft-robotic arm inspired by the octopus: II. From artificial requirements to innovative technological solutions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mazzolai, B; Margheri, L; Cianchetti, M; Dario, P; Laschi, C

    2012-01-01

    Soft robotics is a current focus in robotics research because of the expected capability of soft robots to better interact with real-world environments. As a point of inspiration in the development of innovative technologies in soft robotics, octopuses are particularly interesting ‘animal models’. Octopus arms have unique biomechanical capabilities that combine significant pliability with the ability to exert a great deal of force, because they lack rigid structures but can change and control their degree of stiffness. The octopus arm motor capability is a result of the peculiar arrangement of its muscles and the properties of its tissues. These special abilities have been investigated by the authors in a specific study dedicated to identifying the key principles underlying these biological functions and deriving engineering requirements for robotics solutions. This paper, which is the second in a two-part series, presents how the identified requirements can be used to create innovative technological solutions, such as soft materials, mechanisms and actuators. Experiments indicate the ability of these proposed solutions to ensure the same performance as in the biological model in terms of compliance, elongation and force. These results represent useful and relevant components of innovative soft-robotic systems and suggest their potential use to create a new generation of highly dexterous, soft-bodied robots. (paper)

  8. Fish-inspired robots: design, sensing, actuation, and autonomy--a review of research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raj, Aditi; Thakur, Atul

    2016-04-13

    Underwater robot designs inspired by the behavior, physiology, and anatomy of fishes can provide enhanced maneuverability, stealth, and energy efficiency. Over the last two decades, robotics researchers have developed and reported a large variety of fish-inspired robot designs. The purpose of this review is to report different types of fish-inspired robot designs based upon their intended locomotion patterns. We present a detailed comparison of various design features like sensing, actuation, autonomy, waterproofing, and morphological structure of fish-inspired robots reported in the past decade. We believe that by studying the existing robots, future designers will be able to create new designs by adopting features from the successful robots. The review also summarizes the open research issues that need to be taken up for the further advancement of the field and also for the deployment of fish-inspired robots in practice.

  9. Biologically inspired water purification through selective transport

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Freeman, E C; Soncini, R M; Weiland, L M

    2013-01-01

    Biologically inspired systems based on cellular mechanics demonstrate the ability to selectively transport ions across a bilayer membrane. These systems may be observed in nature in plant roots, which remove select nutrients from the surrounding soil against significant concentration gradients. Using biomimetic principles in the design of tailored active materials allows for the development of selective membranes for capturing and filtering targeted ions. Combining this biomimetic transport system with a method for reclaiming the captured ions will allow for increased removal potential. To illustrate this concept, a device for removing nutrients from waterways to aid in reducing eutrophication is outlined and discussed. Presented is a feasibility study of various cellular configurations designed for this purpose, focusing on maximizing nutrient uptake. The results enable a better understanding of the benefits and obstacles when developing these cellularly inspired systems. (paper)

  10. Drawing inspiration from biological optical systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolpert, H. D.

    2009-08-01

    Bio-Mimicking/Bio-Inspiration: How can we not be inspired by Nature? Life has evolved on earth over the last 3.5 to 4 billion years. Materials formed during this time were not toxic; they were created at low temperatures and low pressures unlike many of the materials developed today. The natural materials formed are self-assembled, multifunctional, nonlinear, complex, adaptive, self-repairing and biodegradable. The designs that failed are fossils. Those that survived are the success stories. Natural materials are mostly formed from organics, inorganic crystals and amorphous phases. The materials make economic sense by optimizing the design of the structures or systems to meet multiple needs. We constantly "see" many similar strategies in approaches, between man and nature, but we seldom look at the details of natures approaches. The power of image processing, in many of natures creatures, is a detail that is often overlooked. Seldon does the engineer interact with the biologist and learn what nature has to teach us. The variety and complexity of biological materials and the optical systems formed should inspire us.

  11. Allothetic and idiothetic sensor fusion in rat-inspired robot localization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weitzenfeld, Alfredo; Fellous, Jean-Marc; Barrera, Alejandra; Tejera, Gonzalo

    2012-06-01

    We describe a spatial cognition model based on the rat's brain neurophysiology as a basis for new robotic navigation architectures. The model integrates allothetic (external visual landmarks) and idiothetic (internal kinesthetic information) cues to train either rat or robot to learn a path enabling it to reach a goal from multiple starting positions. It stands in contrast to most robotic architectures based on SLAM, where a map of the environment is built to provide probabilistic localization information computed from robot odometry and landmark perception. Allothetic cues suffer in general from perceptual ambiguity when trying to distinguish between places with equivalent visual patterns, while idiothetic cues suffer from imprecise motions and limited memory recalls. We experiment with both types of cues in different maze configurations by training rats and robots to find the goal starting from a fixed location, and then testing them to reach the same target from new starting locations. We show that the robot, after having pre-explored a maze, can find a goal with improved efficiency, and is able to (1) learn the correct route to reach the goal, (2) recognize places already visited, and (3) exploit allothetic and idiothetic cues to improve on its performance. We finally contrast our biologically-inspired approach to more traditional robotic approaches and discuss current work in progress.

  12. Creative design inspired by biological knowledge: Technologies and methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Runhua; Liu, Wei; Cao, Guozhong; Shi, Yuan

    2018-05-01

    Biological knowledge is becoming an important source of inspiration for developing creative solutions to engineering design problems and even has a huge potential in formulating ideas that can help firms compete successfully in a dynamic market. To identify the technologies and methods that can facilitate the development of biologically inspired creative designs, this research briefly reviews the existing biological-knowledge-based theories and methods and examines the application of biological-knowledge-inspired designs in various fields. Afterward, this research thoroughly examines the four dimensions of key technologies that underlie the biologically inspired design (BID) process. This research then discusses the future development trends of the BID process before presenting the conclusions.

  13. Biologically based neural network for mobile robot navigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torres Muniz, Raul E.

    1999-01-01

    The new tendency in mobile robots is to crete non-Cartesian system based on reactions to their environment. This emerging technology is known as Evolutionary Robotics, which is combined with the Biorobotic field. This new approach brings cost-effective solutions, flexibility, robustness, and dynamism into the design of mobile robots. It also provides fast reactions to the sensory inputs, and new interpretation of the environment or surroundings of the mobile robot. The Subsumption Architecture (SA) and the action selection dynamics developed by Brooks and Maes, respectively, have successfully obtained autonomous mobile robots initiating this new trend of the Evolutionary Robotics. Their design keeps the mobile robot control simple. This work present a biologically inspired modification of these schemes. The hippocampal-CA3-based neural network developed by Williams Levy is used to implement the SA, while the action selection dynamics emerge from iterations of the levels of competence implemented with the HCA3. This replacement by the HCA3 results in a closer biological model than the SA, combining the Behavior-based intelligence theory with neuroscience. The design is kept simple, and it is implemented in the Khepera Miniature Mobile Robot. The used control scheme obtains an autonomous mobile robot that can be used to execute a mail delivery system and surveillance task inside a building floor.

  14. Biologically inspired emotion recognition from speech

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Buscicchio Cosimo

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Emotion recognition has become a fundamental task in human-computer interaction systems. In this article, we propose an emotion recognition approach based on biologically inspired methods. Specifically, emotion classification is performed using a long short-term memory (LSTM recurrent neural network which is able to recognize long-range dependencies between successive temporal patterns. We propose to represent data using features derived from two different models: mel-frequency cepstral coefficients (MFCC and the Lyon cochlear model. In the experimental phase, results obtained from the LSTM network and the two different feature sets are compared, showing that features derived from the Lyon cochlear model give better recognition results in comparison with those obtained with the traditional MFCC representation.

  15. Mobile Robots for Localizing Gas Emission Sources on Landfill Sites: Is Bio-Inspiration the Way to Go?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Victor eHernandez Bennetts

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Roboticists often take inspiration from animals for designing sensors, actuators or algorithms that control the behaviour of robots. Bio-inspiration is motivated with the uncanny ability of animals to solve complex tasks like recognizing and manipulating objects, walking on uneven terrains, or navigating to the source of an odour plume. In particular the task of tracking an odour plume up to its source has nearly exclusively been addressed using biologically inspired algorithms and robots have been developed, for example, to mimic the behaviour of moths, dungbeetles, or lobsters. In this paper we argue that biomimetic approaches to gas source localization are of limited use, primarily because animals differ fundamentally in their sensing and actuation capabilities from state-of-the-art gas-sensitive mobile robots. To support our claim, we compare actuation and chemical sensing available to mobile robots to the corresponding capabilities of moths. We further characterize airflow and chemosensor measurements obtained with three different robot platforms (two wheeled robots and one flying micro drone in four prototypical environments and show that the assumption of a constant and unidirectional airflow, which is at the basis of many gas source localization approaches, is usually far from being valid. This analysis should help to identify how underlying principles, which govern the gas source tracking behaviour of animals, can be usefully translated into gas source localization approaches that fully take into account the capabilities of mobile robots. We also describe the requirements for a reference application, monitoring of gas emissions at landfill sites with mobile robots, and discuss an engineered gas source localization approach based on statistics as an alternative to biologically-inspired algorithms.

  16. Mobile robots for localizing gas emission sources on landfill sites: is bio-inspiration the way to go?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernandez Bennetts, Victor; Lilienthal, Achim J; Neumann, Patrick P; Trincavelli, Marco

    2011-01-01

    Roboticists often take inspiration from animals for designing sensors, actuators, or algorithms that control the behavior of robots. Bio-inspiration is motivated with the uncanny ability of animals to solve complex tasks like recognizing and manipulating objects, walking on uneven terrains, or navigating to the source of an odor plume. In particular the task of tracking an odor plume up to its source has nearly exclusively been addressed using biologically inspired algorithms and robots have been developed, for example, to mimic the behavior of moths, dung beetles, or lobsters. In this paper we argue that biomimetic approaches to gas source localization are of limited use, primarily because animals differ fundamentally in their sensing and actuation capabilities from state-of-the-art gas-sensitive mobile robots. To support our claim, we compare actuation and chemical sensing available to mobile robots to the corresponding capabilities of moths. We further characterize airflow and chemosensor measurements obtained with three different robot platforms (two wheeled robots and one flying micro-drone) in four prototypical environments and show that the assumption of a constant and unidirectional airflow, which is the basis of many gas source localization approaches, is usually far from being valid. This analysis should help to identify how underlying principles, which govern the gas source tracking behavior of animals, can be usefully "translated" into gas source localization approaches that fully take into account the capabilities of mobile robots. We also describe the requirements for a reference application, monitoring of gas emissions at landfill sites with mobile robots, and discuss an engineered gas source localization approach based on statistics as an alternative to biologically inspired algorithms.

  17. Bio-inspired ciliary force sensor for robotic platforms

    KAUST Repository

    Ribeiro, Pedro

    2017-01-20

    The detection of small forces is of great interest in any robotic application that involves interaction with the environment (e.g., objects manipulation, physical human-robot interaction, minimally invasive surgery), since it allows the robot to detect the contacts early on and to act accordingly. In this letter, we present a sensor design inspired by the ciliary structure frequently found in nature, consisting of an array of permanently magnetized cylinders (cilia) patterned over a giant magnetoresistance sensor (GMR). When these cylinders are deformed in shape due to applied forces, the stray magnetic field variation will change the GMR sensor resistivity, thus enabling the electrical measurement of the applied force. In this letter, we present two 3 mm × 3 mm prototypes composed of an array of five cilia with 1 mm of height and 120 and 200 μm of diameter for each prototype. A minimum force of 333 μN was measured. A simulation model for determining the magnetized cylinders average stray magnetic field is also presented.

  18. Bio-inspired ciliary force sensor for robotic platforms

    KAUST Repository

    Ribeiro, Pedro; Khan, Mohammed Asadullah; Alfadhel, Ahmed; Kosel, Jü rgen; Franco, Fernando; Cardoso, Susana; Bernardino, Alexandre; Schmitz, Alexander; Santos-Victor, Jose; Jamone, Lorenzo

    2017-01-01

    The detection of small forces is of great interest in any robotic application that involves interaction with the environment (e.g., objects manipulation, physical human-robot interaction, minimally invasive surgery), since it allows the robot to detect the contacts early on and to act accordingly. In this letter, we present a sensor design inspired by the ciliary structure frequently found in nature, consisting of an array of permanently magnetized cylinders (cilia) patterned over a giant magnetoresistance sensor (GMR). When these cylinders are deformed in shape due to applied forces, the stray magnetic field variation will change the GMR sensor resistivity, thus enabling the electrical measurement of the applied force. In this letter, we present two 3 mm × 3 mm prototypes composed of an array of five cilia with 1 mm of height and 120 and 200 μm of diameter for each prototype. A minimum force of 333 μN was measured. A simulation model for determining the magnetized cylinders average stray magnetic field is also presented.

  19. Octopus-inspired multi-arm robotic swimming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sfakiotakis, M; Kazakidi, A; Tsakiris, D P

    2015-05-13

    The outstanding locomotor and manipulation characteristics of the octopus have recently inspired the development, by our group, of multi-functional robotic swimmers, featuring both manipulation and locomotion capabilities, which could be of significant engineering interest in underwater applications. During its little-studied arm-swimming behavior, as opposed to the better known jetting via the siphon, the animal appears to generate considerable propulsive thrust and rapid acceleration, predominantly employing movements of its arms. In this work, we capture the fundamental characteristics of the corresponding complex pattern of arm motion by a sculling profile, involving a fast power stroke and a slow recovery stroke. We investigate the propulsive capabilities of a multi-arm robotic system under various swimming gaits, namely patterns of arm coordination, which achieve the generation of forward, as well as backward, propulsion and turning. A lumped-element model of the robotic swimmer, which considers arm compliance and the interaction with the aquatic environment, was used to study the characteristics of these gaits, the effect of various kinematic parameters on propulsion, and the generation of complex trajectories. This investigation focuses on relatively high-stiffness arms. Experiments employing a compliant-body robotic prototype swimmer with eight compliant arms, all made of polyurethane, inside a water tank, successfully demonstrated this novel mode of underwater propulsion. Speeds of up to 0.26 body lengths per second (approximately 100 mm s(-1)), and propulsive forces of up to 3.5 N were achieved, with a non-dimensional cost of transport of 1.42 with all eight arms and of 0.9 with only two active arms. The experiments confirmed the computational results and verified the multi-arm maneuverability and simultaneous object grasping capability of such systems.

  20. A bio-inspired design of a hand robotic exoskeleton for rehabilitation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ong, Aira Patrice R.; Bugtai, Nilo T.

    2018-02-01

    This paper presents the methodology for the design of a five-degree of freedom wearable robotic exoskeleton for hand rehabilitation. The design is inspired by the biological structure and mechanism of the human hand. One of the distinct features of the device is the cable-driven actuation, which provides the flexion and extension motion. A prototype of the orthotic device has been developed to prove the model of the system and has been tested in a 3D printed mechanical hand. The result showed that the proposed device was consistent with the requirements of bionics and was able to demonstrate the flexion and extension of the system.

  1. Design and Analysis of a Bio-Inspired Wire-Driven Multi-Section Flexible Robot

    OpenAIRE

    Li, Zheng; Du, Ruxu

    2013-01-01

    This paper presents a bio-inspired wire-driven multi-section flexible robot. It is inspired by the snake skeleton and octopus arm muscle arrangements. The robot consists of three sections and each section is made up of several identical vertebras, which are articulated by both spherical joints and a flexible backbone. Each section is driven by two groups of wires, controlling the bending motion in X and Y directions. This design integrates the serpentine robots' structure and the continuum ro...

  2. Obstacle traversal and self-righting of bio-inspired robots reveal the physics of multi-modal locomotion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Chen; Fearing, Ronald; Full, Robert

    Most animals move in nature in a variety of locomotor modes. For example, to traverse obstacles like dense vegetation, cockroaches can climb over, push across, reorient their bodies to maneuver through slits, or even transition among these modes forming diverse locomotor pathways; if flipped over, they can also self-right using wings or legs to generate body pitch or roll. By contrast, most locomotion studies have focused on a single mode such as running, walking, or jumping, and robots are still far from capable of life-like, robust, multi-modal locomotion in the real world. Here, we present two recent studies using bio-inspired robots, together with new locomotion energy landscapes derived from locomotor-environment interaction physics, to begin to understand the physics of multi-modal locomotion. (1) Our experiment of a cockroach-inspired legged robot traversing grass-like beam obstacles reveals that, with a terradynamically ``streamlined'' rounded body like that of the insect, robot traversal becomes more probable by accessing locomotor pathways that overcome lower potential energy barriers. (2) Our experiment of a cockroach-inspired self-righting robot further suggests that body vibrations are crucial for exploring locomotion energy landscapes and reaching lower barrier pathways. Finally, we posit that our new framework of locomotion energy landscapes holds promise to better understand and predict multi-modal biological and robotic movement.

  3. Measurement of the Robot Motor Capability of a Robot Motor System: A Fitts’s-Law-Inspired Approach

    OpenAIRE

    C. S. George Lee; Hsien-I Lin

    2013-01-01

    Robot motor capability is a crucial factor for a robot, because it affects how accurately and rapidly a robot can perform a motion to accomplish a task constrained by spatial and temporal conditions. In this paper, we propose and derive a pseudo-index of motor performance (pIp ) to characterize robot motor capability with robot kinematics, dynamics and control taken into consideration. The proposed pIp provides a quantitative measure for a robot with revolute joints, which is inspired from an...

  4. A Biologically Inspired CMOS Image Sensor

    CERN Document Server

    Sarkar, Mukul

    2013-01-01

    Biological systems are a source of inspiration in the development of small autonomous sensor nodes. The two major types of optical vision systems found in nature are the single aperture human eye and the compound eye of insects. The latter are among the most compact and smallest vision sensors. The eye is a compound of individual lenses with their own photoreceptor arrays.  The visual system of insects allows them to fly with a limited intelligence and brain processing power. A CMOS image sensor replicating the perception of vision in insects is discussed and designed in this book for industrial (machine vision) and medical applications. The CMOS metal layer is used to create an embedded micro-polarizer able to sense polarization information. This polarization information is shown to be useful in applications like real time material classification and autonomous agent navigation. Further the sensor is equipped with in pixel analog and digital memories which allow variation of the dynamic range and in-pixel b...

  5. An autonomous robot inspired by insect neurophysiology pursues moving features in natural environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bagheri, Zahra M.; Cazzolato, Benjamin S.; Grainger, Steven; O'Carroll, David C.; Wiederman, Steven D.

    2017-08-01

    Objective. Many computer vision and robotic applications require the implementation of robust and efficient target-tracking algorithms on a moving platform. However, deployment of a real-time system is challenging, even with the computational power of modern hardware. Lightweight and low-powered flying insects, such as dragonflies, track prey or conspecifics within cluttered natural environments, illustrating an efficient biological solution to the target-tracking problem. Approach. We used our recent recordings from ‘small target motion detector’ neurons in the dragonfly brain to inspire the development of a closed-loop target detection and tracking algorithm. This model exploits facilitation, a slow build-up of response to targets which move along long, continuous trajectories, as seen in our electrophysiological data. To test performance in real-world conditions, we implemented this model on a robotic platform that uses active pursuit strategies based on insect behaviour. Main results. Our robot performs robustly in closed-loop pursuit of targets, despite a range of challenging conditions used in our experiments; low contrast targets, heavily cluttered environments and the presence of distracters. We show that the facilitation stage boosts responses to targets moving along continuous trajectories, improving contrast sensitivity and detection of small moving targets against textured backgrounds. Moreover, the temporal properties of facilitation play a useful role in handling vibration of the robotic platform. We also show that the adoption of feed-forward models which predict the sensory consequences of self-movement can significantly improve target detection during saccadic movements. Significance. Our results provide insight into the neuronal mechanisms that underlie biological target detection and selection (from a moving platform), as well as highlight the effectiveness of our bio-inspired algorithm in an artificial visual system.

  6. An immune-inspired swarm aggregation algorithm for self-healing swarm robotic systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Timmis, J; Ismail, A R; Bjerknes, J D; Winfield, A F T

    2016-08-01

    Swarm robotics is concerned with the decentralised coordination of multiple robots having only limited communication and interaction abilities. Although fault tolerance and robustness to individual robot failures have often been used to justify the use of swarm robotic systems, recent studies have shown that swarm robotic systems are susceptible to certain types of failure. In this paper we propose an approach to self-healing swarm robotic systems and take inspiration from the process of granuloma formation, a process of containment and repair found in the immune system. We use a case study of a swarm performing team work where previous works have demonstrated that partially failed robots have the most detrimental effect on overall swarm behaviour. We have developed an immune inspired approach that permits the recovery from certain failure modes during operation of the swarm, overcoming issues that effect swarm behaviour associated with partially failed robots. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Biomimetic autonomous robot inspired by the Cyanea capillata (Cyro)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Villanueva, Alex A; Marut, Kenneth J; Michael, Tyler; Priya, Shashank

    2013-01-01

    A biomimetic robot inspired by Cyanea capillata, termed as ‘Cyro’, was developed to meet the functional demands of underwater surveillance in defense and civilian applications. The vehicle was designed to mimic the morphology and swimming mechanism of the natural counterpart. The body of the vehicle consists of a rigid support structure with linear DC motors which actuate eight mechanical arms. The mechanical arms in conjunction with artificial mesoglea create the hydrodynamic force required for propulsion. The full vehicle measures 170 cm in diameter and has a total mass of 76 kg. An analytical model of the mechanical arm kinematics was developed. The analytical and experimental bell kinematics were analyzed and compared to the C. capillata. Cyro was found to reach the water surface untethered and autonomously from a depth of 182 cm in five actuation cycles. It achieved an average velocity of 8.47 cm s −1  while consuming an average power of 70 W. A two-axis thrust stand was developed to calculate the thrust directly from a single bell segment yielding an average thrust of 27.9 N for the whole vehicle. Steady state velocity during Cyro's swimming test was not reached but the measured performance during its last swim cycle resulted in a cost of transport of 10.9 J (kg ⋅ m) −1  and total efficiency of 0.03. (paper)

  8. Measurement of the Robot Motor Capability of a Robot Motor System: A Fitts’s-Law-Inspired Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. S. George Lee

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Robot motor capability is a crucial factor for a robot, because it affects how accurately and rapidly a robot can perform a motion to accomplish a task constrained by spatial and temporal conditions. In this paper, we propose and derive a pseudo-index of motor performance (pIp to characterize robot motor capability with robot kinematics, dynamics and control taken into consideration. The proposed pIp provides a quantitative measure for a robot with revolute joints, which is inspired from an index of performance in Fitts’s law of human skills. Computer simulations and experiments on a PUMA 560 industrial robot were conducted to validate the proposed pIp for performing a motion accurately and rapidly.

  9. Measurement of the robot motor capability of a robot motor system: a Fitts's-law-inspired approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Hsien-I; Lee, C S George

    2013-07-02

    Robot motor capability is a crucial factor for a robot, because it affects how accurately and rapidly a robot can perform a motion to accomplish a task constrained by spatial and temporal conditions. In this paper, we propose and derive a pseudo-index of motor performance (pIp) to characterize robot motor capability with robot kinematics, dynamics and control taken into consideration. The proposed pIp provides a quantitative measure for a robot with revolute joints, which is inspired from an index of performance in Fitts's law of human skills. Computer simulations and experiments on a PUMA 560 industrial robot were conducted to validate the proposed pIp for performing a motion accurately and rapidly.

  10. Regenerative patterning in Swarm Robots: mutual benefits of research in robotics and stem cell biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    RUBENSTEIN, MICHAEL; SAI, YING; CHUONG, CHENG-MING; SHEN, WEI-MIN

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a novel perspective of Robotic Stem Cells (RSCs), defined as the basic non-biological elements with stem cell like properties that can self-reorganize to repair damage to their swarming organization. “Self” here means that the elements can autonomously decide and execute their actions without requiring any preset triggers, commands, or help from external sources. We develop this concept for two purposes. One is to develop a new theory for self-organization and self-assembly of multi-robots systems that can detect and recover from unforeseen errors or attacks. This self-healing and self-regeneration is used to minimize the compromise of overall function for the robot team. The other is to decipher the basic algorithms of regenerative behaviors in multi-cellular animal models, so that we can understand the fundamental principles used in the regeneration of biological systems. RSCs are envisioned to be basic building elements for future systems that are capable of self-organization, self-assembly, self-healing and self-regeneration. We first discuss the essential features of biological stem cells for such a purpose, and then propose the functional requirements of robotic stem cells with properties equivalent to gene controller, program selector and executor. We show that RSCs are a novel robotic model for scalable self-organization and self-healing in computer simulations and physical implementation. As our understanding of stem cells advances, we expect that future robots will be more versatile, resilient and complex, and such new robotic systems may also demand and inspire new knowledge from stem cell biology and related fields, such as artificial intelligence and tissue engineering. PMID:19557691

  11. Regenerative patterning in Swarm Robots: mutual benefits of research in robotics and stem cell biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rubenstein, Michael; Sai, Ying; Chuong, Cheng-Ming; Shen, Wei-Min

    2009-01-01

    This paper presents a novel perspective of Robotic Stem Cells (RSCs), defined as the basic non-biological elements with stem cell like properties that can self-reorganize to repair damage to their swarming organization. Self here means that the elements can autonomously decide and execute their actions without requiring any preset triggers, commands, or help from external sources. We develop this concept for two purposes. One is to develop a new theory for self-organization and self-assembly of multi-robots systems that can detect and recover from unforeseen errors or attacks. This self-healing and self-regeneration is used to minimize the compromise of overall function for the robot team. The other is to decipher the basic algorithms of regenerative behaviors in multi-cellular animal models, so that we can understand the fundamental principles used in the regeneration of biological systems. RSCs are envisioned to be basic building elements for future systems that are capable of self-organization, self-assembly, self-healing and self-regeneration. We first discuss the essential features of biological stem cells for such a purpose, and then propose the functional requirements of robotic stem cells with properties equivalent to gene controller, program selector and executor. We show that RSCs are a novel robotic model for scalable self-organization and self-healing in computer simulations and physical implementation. As our understanding of stem cells advances, we expect that future robots will be more versatile, resilient and complex, and such new robotic systems may also demand and inspire new knowledge from stem cell biology and related fields, such as artificial intelligence and tissue engineering.

  12. Research on one Bio-inspired Jumping Locomotion Robot for Search and Rescue

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dunwen Wei

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Jumping locomotion is much more effective than other locomotion means in order to tackle the unstructured and complex environment in research and rescue. Here, a bio-inspired jumping robot with a closed-chain mechanism is proposed to achieve the power amplification during taking-off. Through actuating one variable transmission mechanism to change the transmission ratio, the jumping robot reveals biological characteristics in the phase of posture adjustment when adjusting the height and distance of one jump. The kinematics and dynamics of the simplified jumping mechanism model in one jumping cycle sequence are analysed. A compliant contact model considering nonlinear damping is investigated for jumping performance under different terrain characteristics. The numerical simulation algorithm with regard to solving the dynamical equation is described and simulation results are discussed. Finally, one primary prototype and experiment are described. The experimental results show the distance of jumping in the horizontal direction increases with the increasing gear ratio, while the height of jumping decreases in reverse. The jumping robot can enhance the capability to adapt to unknown cluttered environments, such as those encountered in research and rescue, using this strategy.

  13. Design, modeling and control of a pneumatically actuated manipulator inspired by biological continuum structures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kang, Rongjie; Zheng Tianjiang; Guglielmino, Emanuele; Caldwell, Darwin G; Branson, David T

    2013-01-01

    Biological tentacles, such as octopus arms, have entirely flexible structures and virtually infinite degrees of freedom (DOF) that allow for elongation, shortening and bending at any point along the arm length. The amazing dexterity of biological tentacles has driven the growing implementation of continuum manipulators in robotic systems. This paper presents a pneumatic manipulator inspired by biological continuum structures in some of their key features and functions, such as continuum morphology, intrinsic compliance and stereotyped motions with hyper redundant DOF. The kinematics and dynamics of the manipulator are formulated and identified, and a hierarchical controller taking inspiration from the structure of an octopus nervous system is used to relate desired stereotyped motions to individual actuator inputs. Simulations and experiments are carried out to validate the model and prototype where good agreement was found between the two. (paper)

  14. Interactive robots in experimental biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krause, Jens; Winfield, Alan F T; Deneubourg, Jean-Louis

    2011-07-01

    Interactive robots have the potential to revolutionise the study of social behaviour because they provide several methodological advances. In interactions with live animals, the behaviour of robots can be standardised, morphology and behaviour can be decoupled (so that different morphologies and behavioural strategies can be combined), behaviour can be manipulated in complex interaction sequences and models of behaviour can be embodied by the robot and thereby be tested. Furthermore, robots can be used as demonstrators in experiments on social learning. As we discuss here, the opportunities that robots create for new experimental approaches have far-reaching consequences for research in fields such as mate choice, cooperation, social learning, personality studies and collective behaviour. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Synthetic biology, inspired by synthetic chemistry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malinova, V; Nallani, M; Meier, W P; Sinner, E K

    2012-07-16

    The topic synthetic biology appears still as an 'empty basket to be filled'. However, there is already plenty of claims and visions, as well as convincing research strategies about the theme of synthetic biology. First of all, synthetic biology seems to be about the engineering of biology - about bottom-up and top-down approaches, compromising complexity versus stability of artificial architectures, relevant in biology. Synthetic biology accounts for heterogeneous approaches towards minimal and even artificial life, the engineering of biochemical pathways on the organismic level, the modelling of molecular processes and finally, the combination of synthetic with nature-derived materials and architectural concepts, such as a cellular membrane. Still, synthetic biology is a discipline, which embraces interdisciplinary attempts in order to have a profound, scientific base to enable the re-design of nature and to compose architectures and processes with man-made matter. We like to give an overview about the developments in the field of synthetic biology, regarding polymer-based analogs of cellular membranes and what questions can be answered by applying synthetic polymer science towards the smallest unit in life, namely a cell. Copyright © 2012 Federation of European Biochemical Societies. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. INVESTIGATING PECTORAL SHAPES AND LOCOMOTIVE STRATEGIES FOR CONCEPTUAL DESIGNING BIO-INSPIRED ROBOTIC FISH

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. I. MAINONG

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes the performance analysis of a conceptual bio-inspired robotic fish design, which is based on the morphology similar to the boxfish (Ostracion melagris. The robotic fish prototype is driven by three micro servos; two on the pectoral fins, and one on the caudal fin. Two electronic rapid prototyping boards were employed; one for the movement of robotic fish, and one for the force sensors measurements. The robotic fish were built using fused deposition modeling (FDM, more popularly known as the 3D printing method. Several designs of pectoral fins (rectangular, triangular and quarter-ellipse with unchanging the value of aspect ratio (AR employed to measure the performance of the prototype robotic fish in terms of hydrodynamics, thrust and maneuvering characteristics. The analysis of the unmanned robotic system performance is made experimentally and the results show that the proposed bioinspired robotic prototype opens up the possibility of design optimization research for future work.

  17. Developing a Psychologically Inspired Cognitive Architecture for Robotic Control: The Symbolic and Subsymbolic Robotic Intelligence Control System (SS-RICS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Troy Dale Kelley

    2006-09-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes the ongoing development of a robotic control architecture that was inspired by computational cognitive architectures from the discipline of cognitive psychology. The robotic control architecture combines symbolic and subsymbolic representations of knowledge into a unified control structure. The architecture is organized as a goal driven, serially executing, production system at the highest symbolic level; and a multiple algorithm, parallel executing, simple collection of algorithms at the lowest subsymbolic level. The goal is to create a system that will progress through the same cognitive developmental milestones as do human infants. Common robotics problems of localization, object recognition, and object permanence are addressed within the specified framework.

  18. Developing a Psychologically Inspired Cognitive Architecture for Robotic Control: The Symbolic and Subsymbolic Robotic Intelligence Control System (SS-RICS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Troy Dale Kelley

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes the ongoing development of a robotic control architecture that was inspired by computational cognitive architectures from the discipline of cognitive psychology. The robotic control architecture combines symbolic and subsymbolic representations of knowledge into a unified control structure. The architecture is organized as a goal driven, serially executing, production system at the highest symbolic level; and a multiple algorithm, parallel executing, simple collection of algorithms at the lowest subsymbolic level. The goal is to create a system that will progress through the same cognitive developmental milestones as do human infants. Common robotics problems of localization, object recognition, and object permanence are addressed within the specified framework.

  19. Design and Analysis of a Bio-Inspired Wire-Driven Multi-Section Flexible Robot

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zheng Li

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a bio-inspired wire-driven multi-section flexible robot. It is inspired by the snake skeleton and octopus arm muscle arrangements. The robot consists of three sections and each section is made up of several identical vertebras, which are articulated by both spherical joints and a flexible backbone. Each section is driven by two groups of wires, controlling the bending motion in X and Y directions. This design integrates the serpentine robots' structure and the continuum robots' actuation. As a result, it is more compact than traditional serpentine robots and has a higher positioning accuracy than typical continuum soft robots, such as OctArm V. A Kinematics model and a workspace model of the robot are developed based on the piece wise constant curvature assumption. To evaluate the design, a prototype is built and experiments are carried out. The average distal end positioning error is less than 4%. Characteristics of the wire-driven robot are also discussed, including the leverage effect and the manipulability under constraint. These features makes the proposed robot well suited to confined spaces, especially for working in minimally invasive surgery, nuclear reactor pipelines, disaster debris, etc.

  20. Complex biological and bio-inspired systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ecke, Robert E [Los Alamos National Laboratory

    2009-01-01

    The understanding and characterization ofthe fundamental processes of the function of biological systems underpins many of the important challenges facing American society, from the pathology of infectious disease and the efficacy ofvaccines, to the development of materials that mimic biological functionality and deliver exceptional and novel structural and dynamic properties. These problems are fundamentally complex, involving many interacting components and poorly understood bio-chemical kinetics. We use the basic science of statistical physics, kinetic theory, cellular bio-chemistry, soft-matter physics, and information science to develop cell level models and explore the use ofbiomimetic materials. This project seeks to determine how cell level processes, such as response to mechanical stresses, chemical constituents and related gradients, and other cell signaling mechanisms, integrate and combine to create a functioning organism. The research focuses on the basic physical processes that take place at different levels ofthe biological organism: the basic role of molecular and chemical interactions are investigated, the dynamics of the DNA-molecule and its phylogenetic role are examined and the regulatory networks of complex biochemical processes are modeled. These efforts may lead to early warning algorithms ofpathogen outbreaks, new bio-sensors to detect hazards from pathomic viruses to chemical contaminants. Other potential applications include the development of efficient bio-fuel alternative-energy processes and the exploration ofnovel materials for energy usages. Finally, we use the notion of 'coarse-graining,' which is a method for averaging over less important degrees of freedom to develop computational models to predict cell function and systems-level response to disease, chemical stress, or biological pathomic agents. This project supports Energy Security, Threat Reduction, and the missions of the DOE Office of Science through its efforts to

  1. A Soft Body as a Reservoir: Case Studies in a Dynamic Model of Octopus-Inspired Soft Robotic Arm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kohei eNakajima

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available The behaviors of the animals or embodied agents are characterized by the dynamic coupling between the brain, the body, and the environment. This implies that control, which is conventionally thought to be handled by the brain or a controller, can partially be outsourced to the physical body and the interaction with the environment. This idea has been demonstrated in a number of recently constructed robots, in particular from the field of soft robotics. Soft robots are made of a soft material introducing high-dimensionality, nonlinearity, and elasticity, which often makes the robots difficult to control. Biological systems such as the octopus are mastering their complex bodies in highly sophisticated manners by capitalizing on their body dynamics. We will demonstrate that the structure of the octopus arm cannot only be exploited for generating behavior but also, in a sense, as a computational resource. By using a soft robotic arm inspired by the octopus we show in a number of experiments how control is partially incorporated into the physical arm’s dynamics and how the arm’s dynamics can be exploited to approximate nonlinear dynamical systems and embed nonlinear limit cycles. Future application scenarios as well as the implications of the results for the octopus biology are also discussed.

  2. Flipper-driven terrestrial locomotion of a sea turtle-inspired robot

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mazouchova, Nicole; Umbanhowar, Paul B; Goldman, Daniel I

    2013-01-01

    To discover principles of flipper-based terrestrial locomotion we study the mechanics of a hatchling sea turtle-inspired robot, FlipperBot (FBot), during quasi-static movement on granular media. FBot implements a symmetric gait using two servo-motor-driven front limbs with flat-plate flippers and either freely rotating or fixed wrist joints. For a range of gaits, FBot moves with a constant step length. However, for gaits with sufficiently shallow flipper penetration or sufficiently large stroke, per step displacement decreases with each successive step resulting in failure (zero forward displacement) within a few steps. For the fixed wrist, failure occurs when FBot interacts with ground disturbed during previous steps, and measurements reveal that flipper generated forces decrease as per step displacement decreases. The biologically inspired free wrist is less prone to failure, but slip-induced failure can still occur if FBot pitches forward and drives its leading edge into the substrate. In the constant step length regime, kinematic and force-based models accurately predict FBot's motion for free and fixed wrist configurations, respectively. When combined with independent force measurements, models and experiments provide insight into how disturbed ground leads to locomotory failure and help explain differences in hatchling sea turtle performance. (paper)

  3. Human-Inspired Eigenmovement Concept Provides Coupling-Free Sensorimotor Control in Humanoid Robot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alexandrov, Alexei V; Lippi, Vittorio; Mergner, Thomas; Frolov, Alexander A; Hettich, Georg; Husek, Dusan

    2017-01-01

    Control of a multi-body system in both robots and humans may face the problem of destabilizing dynamic coupling effects arising between linked body segments. The state of the art solutions in robotics are full state feedback controllers. For human hip-ankle coordination, a more parsimonious and theoretically stable alternative to the robotics solution has been suggested in terms of the Eigenmovement (EM) control. Eigenmovements are kinematic synergies designed to describe the multi DoF system, and its control, with a set of independent, and hence coupling-free , scalar equations. This paper investigates whether the EM alternative shows "real-world robustness" against noisy and inaccurate sensors, mechanical non-linearities such as dead zones, and human-like feedback time delays when controlling hip-ankle movements of a balancing humanoid robot. The EM concept and the EM controller are introduced, the robot's dynamics are identified using a biomechanical approach, and robot tests are performed in a human posture control laboratory. The tests show that the EM controller provides stable control of the robot with proactive ("voluntary") movements and reactive balancing of stance during support surface tilts and translations. Although a preliminary robot-human comparison reveals similarities and differences, we conclude (i) the Eigenmovement concept is a valid candidate when different concepts of human sensorimotor control are considered, and (ii) that human-inspired robot experiments may help to decide in future the choice among the candidates and to improve the design of humanoid robots and robotic rehabilitation devices.

  4. Handwritten-word spotting using biologically inspired features

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Zant, Tijn; Schomaker, Lambert; Haak, Koen

    For quick access to new handwritten collections, current handwriting recognition methods are too cumbersome. They cannot deal with the lack of labeled data and would require extensive laboratory training for each individual script, style, language, and collection. We propose a biologically inspired

  5. Biologically inspired technologies using artificial muscles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph

    2005-01-01

    After billions of years of evolution, nature developed inventions that work, which are appropriate for the intended tasks and that last. The evolution of nature led to the introduction of highly effective and power efficient biological mechanisms that are scalable from micron to many meters in size. Imitating these mechanisms offers enormous potentials for the improvement of our life and the tools we use. Humans have always made efforts to imitate nature and we are increasingly reaching levels of advancement where it becomes significantly easier to imitate, copy, and adapt biological methods, processes and systems. Some of the biomimetic technologies that have emerged include artificial muscles, artificial intelligence, and artificial vision to which significant advances in materials science, mechanics, electronics, and computer science have contributed greatly. One of the newest fields of biomimetics is the electroactive polymers (EAP) that are also known as artificial muscles. To take advantage of these materials, efforts are made worldwide to establish a strong infrastructure addressing the need for comprehensive analytical modeling of their operation mechanism and develop effective processing and characterization techniques. The field is still in its emerging state and robust materials are not readily available however in recent years significant progress has been made and commercial products have already started to appear. This paper covers the state-of-the-art and challenges to making artificial muscles and their potential biomimetic applications.

  6. Optimization of Power Utilization in Multimobile Robot Foraging Behavior Inspired by Honeybees System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmad, Faisul Arif; Ramli, Abd Rahman; Samsudin, Khairulmizam; Hashim, Shaiful Jahari

    2014-01-01

    Deploying large numbers of mobile robots which can interact with each other produces swarm intelligent behavior. However, mobile robots are normally running with finite energy resource, supplied from finite battery. The limitation of energy resource required human intervention for recharging the batteries. The sharing information among the mobile robots would be one of the potentials to overcome the limitation on previously recharging system. A new approach is proposed based on integrated intelligent system inspired by foraging of honeybees applied to multimobile robot scenario. This integrated approach caters for both working and foraging stages for known/unknown power station locations. Swarm mobile robot inspired by honeybee is simulated to explore and identify the power station for battery recharging. The mobile robots will share the location information of the power station with each other. The result showed that mobile robots consume less energy and less time when they are cooperating with each other for foraging process. The optimizing of foraging behavior would result in the mobile robots spending more time to do real work. PMID:24949491

  7. A Comparative Study of Biologically Inspired Walking Gaits through Waypoint Navigation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Umar Asif

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper investigates the locomotion of a walking robot by delivering a comparative study of three different biologically inspired walking gaits, namely: tripod, ripple, and wave, in terms of ground slippage they experience while walking. The objective of this study is to identify the gait model which experiences the minimum slippage while walking on a ground with a specific coefficient of friction. To accomplish this feat, the robot is steered over a reference path using a waypoint navigation algorithm, and the divergence of the robot from the reference path is investigated in terms of slip errors. Experiments are conducted through closed-loop simulations using an open dynamics engine which emphasizes the fact that due to uneven and unsymmetrical distribution of payload in tripod and ripple gait models, the robot experiences comparatively larger drift in these gaits than when using the wave gait model in which the distribution of payload is even and symmetrical on both sides of the robot body. The paper investigates this phenomenon on the basis of force distribution of supporting legs in each gait model.

  8. A Robot-Soccer-Coordination Inspired Control Architecture Applied to Islanded Microgrids

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aldana, Nelson Leonardo Diaz; Guarnizo, Jose Guillermo; Mellado, Martin

    2017-01-01

    of the energy storage systems, may ensure proper and reliable operation of the microgrid. This paper proposes a structured architecture based on tactics, roles and behaviors for a coordinated operation of islanded microgrids. The architecture is inspired on a robot soccer strategy with global perception...

  9. A soft body as a reservoir: case studies in a dynamic model of octopus-inspired soft robotic arm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakajima, Kohei; Hauser, Helmut; Kang, Rongjie; Guglielmino, Emanuele; Caldwell, Darwin G.; Pfeifer, Rolf

    2013-01-01

    The behaviors of the animals or embodied agents are characterized by the dynamic coupling between the brain, the body, and the environment. This implies that control, which is conventionally thought to be handled by the brain or a controller, can partially be outsourced to the physical body and the interaction with the environment. This idea has been demonstrated in a number of recently constructed robots, in particular from the field of “soft robotics”. Soft robots are made of a soft material introducing high-dimensionality, non-linearity, and elasticity, which often makes the robots difficult to control. Biological systems such as the octopus are mastering their complex bodies in highly sophisticated manners by capitalizing on their body dynamics. We will demonstrate that the structure of the octopus arm cannot only be exploited for generating behavior but also, in a sense, as a computational resource. By using a soft robotic arm inspired by the octopus we show in a number of experiments how control is partially incorporated into the physical arm's dynamics and how the arm's dynamics can be exploited to approximate non-linear dynamical systems and embed non-linear limit cycles. Future application scenarios as well as the implications of the results for the octopus biology are also discussed. PMID:23847526

  10. Bio-inspired smart sensors for a hexapod robot

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bilberg, Arne

    2011-01-01

    EMICAB (Embodied Motion Intelligence for Cognitive, Autonomous Robots) is an EU founded project where a consortium of 4 Universities is working together to integrate smart body mechanics and sensors with intelligent planning and motor behavior in order to make a holistic approach to artificial...

  11. Semiconductor Devices Inspired By and Integrated With Biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rogers, John [University of Illinois

    2012-04-25

    Biology is curved, soft and elastic; silicon wafers are not. Semiconductor technologies that can bridge this gap in form and mechanics will create new opportunities in devices that adopt biologically inspired designs or require intimate integration with the human body. This talk describes the development of ideas for electronics that offer the performance of state-of-the-art, wafer- based systems but with the mechanical properties of a rubber band. We explain the underlying materials science and mechanics of these approaches, and illustrate their use in (1) bio- integrated, ‘tissue-like’ electronics with unique capabilities for mapping cardiac and neural electrophysiology, and (2) bio-inspired, ‘eyeball’ cameras with exceptional imaging properties enabled by curvilinear, Petzval designs.

  12. Bio-inspired grasp control in a robotic hand with massive sensorial input.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ascari, Luca; Bertocchi, Ulisse; Corradi, Paolo; Laschi, Cecilia; Dario, Paolo

    2009-02-01

    The capability of grasping and lifting an object in a suitable, stable and controlled way is an outstanding feature for a robot, and thus far, one of the major problems to be solved in robotics. No robotic tools able to perform an advanced control of the grasp as, for instance, the human hand does, have been demonstrated to date. Due to its capital importance in science and in many applications, namely from biomedics to manufacturing, the issue has been matter of deep scientific investigations in both the field of neurophysiology and robotics. While the former is contributing with a profound understanding of the dynamics of real-time control of the slippage and grasp force in the human hand, the latter tries more and more to reproduce, or take inspiration by, the nature's approach, by means of hardware and software technology. On this regard, one of the major constraints robotics has to overcome is the real-time processing of a large amounts of data generated by the tactile sensors while grasping, which poses serious problems to the available computational power. In this paper a bio-inspired approach to tactile data processing has been followed in order to design and test a hardware-software robotic architecture that works on the parallel processing of a large amount of tactile sensing signals. The working principle of the architecture bases on the cellular nonlinear/neural network (CNN) paradigm, while using both hand shape and spatial-temporal features obtained from an array of microfabricated force sensors, in order to control the sensory-motor coordination of the robotic system. Prototypical grasping tasks were selected to measure the system performances applied to a computer-interfaced robotic hand. Successful grasps of several objects, completely unknown to the robot, e.g. soft and deformable objects like plastic bottles, soft balls, and Japanese tofu, have been demonstrated.

  13. Design and Dynamics Analysis of a Bio-Inspired Intermittent Hopping Robot for Planetary Surface Exploration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Long Bai

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available A small, bio-inspired and minimally actuated intermittent hopping robot for planetary surface exploration is proposed in this paper. The robot uses a combined-geared six-bar linkage/spring mechanism, which has a possible rich trajectory and metamorphic characteristics and, due to this, the robot is able to recharge, lock/release and jump by using just a micro-power motor as the actuator. Since the robotic system has a closed-chain structure and employs underactuated redundant motion, the constrained multi-body dynamics are derived with time-varying driving parameters and ground unilateral constraint both taken into consideration. In addition, the established dynamics equations, mixed of higher order differential and algebraic expressions, are solved by the immediate integration algorithm. A prototype is implemented and experiments are carried out. The results show that the robot, using a micro-power motor as the actuator and solar cells as the power supply, can achieve a biomimetic multi-body hopping stance and a nonlinearly increasing driving force. Typically, the robot can jump a horizontal distance of about 1 m and a vertical height of about 0.3 m, with its trunk and foot moving stably during takeoff. In addition, the computational and experimental results are consistent as regards the hopping performance of the robot, which suggests that the proposed dynamics model and its solution have general applicability to motion prediction and the performance analysis of intermittent hopping robots.

  14. A bio-inspired swarm robot coordination algorithm for multiple target searching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meng, Yan; Gan, Jing; Desai, Sachi

    2008-04-01

    The coordination of a multi-robot system searching for multi targets is challenging under dynamic environment since the multi-robot system demands group coherence (agents need to have the incentive to work together faithfully) and group competence (agents need to know how to work together well). In our previous proposed bio-inspired coordination method, Local Interaction through Virtual Stigmergy (LIVS), one problem is the considerable randomness of the robot movement during coordination, which may lead to more power consumption and longer searching time. To address these issues, an adaptive LIVS (ALIVS) method is proposed in this paper, which not only considers the travel cost and target weight, but also predicting the target/robot ratio and potential robot redundancy with respect to the detected targets. Furthermore, a dynamic weight adjustment is also applied to improve the searching performance. This new method a truly distributed method where each robot makes its own decision based on its local sensing information and the information from its neighbors. Basically, each robot only communicates with its neighbors through a virtual stigmergy mechanism and makes its local movement decision based on a Particle Swarm Optimization (PSO) algorithm. The proposed ALIVS algorithm has been implemented on the embodied robot simulator, Player/Stage, in a searching target. The simulation results demonstrate the efficiency and robustness in a power-efficient manner with the real-world constraints.

  15. Long-term knowledge acquisition using contextual information in a memory-inspired robot architecture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pratama, Ferdian; Mastrogiovanni, Fulvio; Lee, Soon Geul; Chong, Nak Young

    2017-03-01

    In this paper, we present a novel cognitive framework allowing a robot to form memories of relevant traits of its perceptions and to recall them when necessary. The framework is based on two main principles: on the one hand, we propose an architecture inspired by current knowledge in human memory organisation; on the other hand, we integrate such an architecture with the notion of context, which is used to modulate the knowledge acquisition process when consolidating memories and forming new ones, as well as with the notion of familiarity, which is employed to retrieve proper memories given relevant cues. Although much research has been carried out, which exploits Machine Learning approaches to provide robots with internal models of their environment (including objects and occurring events therein), we argue that such approaches may not be the right direction to follow if a long-term, continuous knowledge acquisition is to be achieved. As a case study scenario, we focus on both robot-environment and human-robot interaction processes. In case of robot-environment interaction, a robot performs pick and place movements using the objects in the workspace, at the same time observing their displacement on a table in front of it, and progressively forms memories defined as relevant cues (e.g. colour, shape or relative position) in a context-aware fashion. As far as human-robot interaction is concerned, the robot can recall specific snapshots representing past events using both sensory information and contextual cues upon request by humans.

  16. Human-Inspired Eigenmovement Concept Provides Coupling-Free Sensorimotor Control in Humanoid Robot

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Mergner

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Control of a multi-body system in both robots and humans may face the problem of destabilizing dynamic coupling effects arising between linked body segments. The state of the art solutions in robotics are full state feedback controllers. For human hip-ankle coordination, a more parsimonious and theoretically stable alternative to the robotics solution has been suggested in terms of the Eigenmovement (EM control. Eigenmovements are kinematic synergies designed to describe the multi DoF system, and its control, with a set of independent, and hence coupling-free, scalar equations. This paper investigates whether the EM alternative shows “real-world robustness” against noisy and inaccurate sensors, mechanical non-linearities such as dead zones, and human-like feedback time delays when controlling hip-ankle movements of a balancing humanoid robot. The EM concept and the EM controller are introduced, the robot's dynamics are identified using a biomechanical approach, and robot tests are performed in a human posture control laboratory. The tests show that the EM controller provides stable control of the robot with proactive (“voluntary” movements and reactive balancing of stance during support surface tilts and translations. Although a preliminary robot-human comparison reveals similarities and differences, we conclude (i the Eigenmovement concept is a valid candidate when different concepts of human sensorimotor control are considered, and (ii that human-inspired robot experiments may help to decide in future the choice among the candidates and to improve the design of humanoid robots and robotic rehabilitation devices.

  17. Dynamic analysis of a bio-inspired climbing robot using ADAMS-Simulink co-simulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chattopadhyay, P.; Dikshit, H.; Majumder, A.; Ghoshal, S.; Maity, A.

    2018-04-01

    Climbing robot has been an area of interest since the demand of inspection of pipeline, nuclear power plant, and various big structure is growing up rapidly. This paper represents the development of a bio-inspired modular robot which mimics inchworm locomotion during climbing. In the present paper, the climbing motion is achieved only on a flat vertical plane by magnetic adhesion principle. The robot is modelled as a 4-link planar mechanism with three revolute joints actuated by DC servo motors. Sinusoidal gait pattern is used to approximate the motion of an inchworm. The dynamics of the robot is presented by using ADAMS/MATLAB co-simulation methodology. The simulation result gives the maximum value of joint torque during one complete cycle of motion. This torque value is used for the selection of servo motor specifications required to build the prototype.

  18. Anticipation: Beyond synthetic biology and cognitive robotics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nasuto, Slawomir J; Hayashi, Yoshikatsu

    2016-10-01

    The aim of this paper is to propose that current robotic technologies cannot have intentional states any more than is feasible within the sensorimotor variant of embodied cognition. It argues that anticipation is an emerging concept that can provide a bridge between both the deepest philosophical theories about the nature of life and cognition and the empirical biological and cognitive sciences steeped in reductionist and Newtonian conceptions of causality. The paper advocates that in order to move forward, cognitive robotics needs to embrace new platforms and a conceptual framework that will enable it to pursue, in a meaningful way, questions about autonomy and purposeful behaviour. We suggest that hybrid systems, part robotic and part cultures of neurones, offer experimental platforms where different dimensions of enactivism (sensorimotor, constitutive foundations of biological autonomy, including anticipation), and their relative contributions to cognition, can be investigated in an integrated way. A careful progression, mindful to the deep philosophical concerns but also respecting empirical evidence, will ultimately lead towards unifying theoretical and empirical biological sciences and may offer advancement where reductionist sciences have been so far faltering. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  19. 7th World Congress on Nature and Biologically Inspired Computing

    CERN Document Server

    Engelbrecht, Andries; Abraham, Ajith; Plessis, Mathys; Snášel, Václav; Muda, Azah

    2016-01-01

    World Congress on Nature and Biologically Inspired Computing (NaBIC) is organized to discuss the state-of-the-art as well as to address various issues with respect to Nurturing Intelligent Computing Towards Advancement of Machine Intelligence. This Volume contains the papers presented in the Seventh World Congress (NaBIC’15) held in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa during December 01-03, 2015. The 39 papers presented in this Volume were carefully reviewed and selected. The Volume would be a valuable reference to researchers, students and practitioners in the computational intelligence field.

  20. Biologically-inspired Learning in Pulsed Neural Networks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lehmann, Torsten; Woodburn, Robin

    1999-01-01

    Self-learning chips to implement many popular ANN (artificial neural network) algorithms are very difficult to design. We explain why this is so and say what lessons previous work teaches us in the design of self-learning systems. We offer a contribution to the `biologically-inspired' approach......, explaining what we mean by this term and providing an example of a robust, self-learning design that can solve simple classical-conditioning tasks. We give details of the design of individual circuits to perform component functions, which can then be combined into a network to solve the task. We argue...

  1. Bio-Inspired Interaction Control of Robotic Machines for Motor Therapy

    OpenAIRE

    Zollo, Loredana; Formica, Domenico; Guglielmelli, Eugenio

    2007-01-01

    In this chapter basic criteria for the design and implementation of interaction control of robotic machines for motor therapy have been briefly introduced and two bio-inspired compliance control laws developed by the authors to address requirements coming from this specific application field have been presented. The two control laws are named the coactivation-based compliance control in the joint space and the torque-dependent compliance control in the joint space, respectively. They try to o...

  2. Inspiration, simulation and design for smart robot manipulators from the sucker actuation mechanism of cephalopods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grasso, Frank W; Setlur, Pradeep

    2007-12-01

    Octopus arms house 200-300 independently controlled suckers that can alternately afford an octopus fine manipulation of small objects and produce high adhesion forces on virtually any non-porous surface. Octopuses use their suckers to grasp, rotate and reposition soft objects (e.g., octopus eggs) without damaging them and to provide strong, reversible adhesion forces to anchor the octopus to hard substrates (e.g., rock) during wave surge. The biological 'design' of the sucker system is understood to be divided anatomically into three functional groups: the infundibulum that produces a surface seal that conforms to arbitrary surface geometry; the acetabulum that generates negative pressures for adhesion; and the extrinsic muscles that allow adhered surfaces to be rotated relative to the arm. The effector underlying these abilities is the muscular hydrostat. Guided by sensory input, the thousands of muscle fibers within the muscular hydrostats of the sucker act in coordination to provide stiffness or force when and where needed. The mechanical malleability of octopus suckers, the interdigitated arrangement of their muscle fibers and the flexible interconnections of its parts make direct studies of their control challenging. We developed a dynamic simulator (ABSAMS) that models the general functioning of muscular hydrostat systems built from assemblies of biologically constrained muscular hydrostat models. We report here on simulation studies of octopus-inspired and artificial suckers implemented in this system. These simulations reproduce aspects of octopus sucker performance and squid tentacle extension. Simulations run with these models using parameters from man-made actuators and materials can serve as tools for designing soft robotic implementations of man-made artificial suckers and soft manipulators.

  3. STRIDE II: A Water Strider-inspired Miniature Robot with Circular Footpads

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Onur Ozcan

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Water strider insects have attracted the attention of many researchers due to their power-efficient and agile water surface locomotion. This study proposes a new water strider insect-inspired robot, called STRIDE II, which uses new circular footpads for high lift, stability and payload capability, and a new elliptical leg rotation mechanism for more efficient water surface propulsion. Using the advantage of scaling effects on surface tension versus buoyancy, similar to water strider insects, this robot uses the repulsive surface tension force on its footpads as the dominant lift principle instead of creating buoyancy by using very skinny (1 mm diameter circular footpads coated with a superhydrophobic material. The robot and the insect propel quickly and power efficiently on the water surface by the sculling motion of their two side-legs, which never break the water surface completely. This paper proposes models for the lift, drag and propulsion forces and the energy efficiency of the proposed legged robot, and experiments are conducted to verify these models. After optimizing the robot design using the lift models, a maximum lift capacity of 55 grams is achieved using 12 footpads with a 4.2 cm outer diameter, while the robot itself weighs 21.75 grams. For this robot, a propulsion efficiency of 22.3% was measured. The maximum forward and turning speeds of the robot were measured as 71.5 mm/sec and 0.21 rad/sec, respectively. These water strider robots could be used in water surface monitoring, cleaning and analysis in lakes, dams, rivers and the sea.

  4. Constructive biology and approaches to temporal grounding in postreactive robotics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nehaniv, Chrystopher L.; Dautenhahn, Kerstin; Loomes, Martin J.

    1999-08-01

    Constructive Biology means understanding biological mechanisms through building systems that exhibit life-like properties. Applications include learning engineering tricks from biological system, as well as the validation in biological modeling. In particular, biological system in the course of development and experience become temporally grounded. Researchers attempting to transcend mere reactivity have been inspired by the drives, motivations, homeostasis, hormonal control, and emotions of animals. In order to contextualize and modulate behavior, these ideas have been introduced into robotics and synthetic agents, while further flexibility is achieved by introducing learning. Broadening scope of the temporal horizon further requires post-reactive techniques that address not only the action in the now, although such action may perhaps be modulated by drives and affect. Support is needed for expressing and benefitting from pats experiences, predictions of the future, and form interaction histories of the self with the world and with other agents. Mathematical methods provide a new way to support such grounding in the construction of post-reactive systems. Moreover, the communication of such mathematical encoded histories of experience between situated agents opens a route to narrative intelligence, analogous to communication or story telling in societies.

  5. Hydrodynamics of an Under-actuated Plesiosaur-inspired robot

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weymouth, Gabriel; Devereux, Kate; Copsey, Nick; Muscutt, Luke; Downes, Jon; Ganapathisubramani, Bharath

    2017-11-01

    Underwater vehicles are increasingly important tools for use in science and engineering, but maneuverability and mission life seem to be mutually exclusive goals. Inspired by the unique swimming method of the plesiosaur, which used four flippers of essentially equal size and musculature, we analyzed designed and built an underwater vehicle with the potential for both gliding and active maneuvering modes. Using 2D simulations and strip theory approximation to account for the changing arc length along the flipper span, we studied the wake and forces on the foils and determined the optimum flipper geometry, spacing and kinematics. To reduce mechanical and control complexity and cost, we next studied the impact of under-actuated kinematics. Even after optimizing pivot location and range of motion, leaving the foils free to pitch was found to reduce efficiency by approximately 50%. Based on these specifications, the vehicle was built and tested over a range of free swimming and maneuvering cases using motion tracking equipment. The excellent maneuverability of the under-actuated vehicle validates the concept, and the new platform should enable further detailed experimental measurements in the future.

  6. Ultra-fast escape maneuver of an octopus-inspired robot

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Weymouth, G D; Subramaniam, V; Triantafyllou, M S

    2015-01-01

    We design and test an octopus-inspired flexible hull robot that demonstrates outstanding fast-starting performance. The robot is hyper-inflated with water, and then rapidly deflates to expel the fluid so as to power the escape maneuver. Using this robot we verify for the first time in laboratory testing that rapid size-change can substantially reduce separation in bluff bodies traveling several body lengths, and recover fluid energy which can be employed to improve the propulsive performance. The robot is found to experience speeds over ten body lengths per second, exceeding that of a similarly propelled optimally streamlined rigid rocket. The peak net thrust force on the robot is more than 2.6 times that on an optimal rigid body performing the same maneuver, experimentally demonstrating large energy recovery and enabling acceleration greater than 14 body lengths per second squared. Finally, over 53% of the available energy is converted into payload kinetic energy, a performance that exceeds the estimated energy conversion efficiency of fast-starting fish. The Reynolds number based on final speed and robot length is Re≈700 000. We use the experimental data to establish a fundamental deflation scaling parameter σ∗ which characterizes the mechanisms of flow control via shape change. Based on this scaling parameter, we find that the fast-starting performance improves with increasing size. (paper)

  7. Fully decentralized control of a soft-bodied robot inspired by true slime mold.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Umedachi, Takuya; Takeda, Koichi; Nakagaki, Toshiyuki; Kobayashi, Ryo; Ishiguro, Akio

    2010-03-01

    Animals exhibit astoundingly adaptive and supple locomotion under real world constraints. In order to endow robots with similar capabilities, we must implement many degrees of freedom, equivalent to animals, into the robots' bodies. For taming many degrees of freedom, the concept of autonomous decentralized control plays a pivotal role. However a systematic way of designing such autonomous decentralized control system is still missing. Aiming at understanding the principles that underlie animals' locomotion, we have focused on a true slime mold, a primitive living organism, and extracted a design scheme for autonomous decentralized control system. In order to validate this design scheme, this article presents a soft-bodied amoeboid robot inspired by the true slime mold. Significant features of this robot are twofold: (1) the robot has a truly soft and deformable body stemming from real-time tunable springs and protoplasm, the former is used for an outer skin of the body and the latter is to satisfy the law of conservation of mass; and (2) fully decentralized control using coupled oscillators with completely local sensory feedback mechanism is realized by exploiting the long-distance physical interaction between the body parts stemming from the law of conservation of protoplasmic mass. Simulation results show that this robot exhibits highly supple and adaptive locomotion without relying on any hierarchical structure. The results obtained are expected to shed new light on design methodology for autonomous decentralized control system.

  8. Ultra-fast escape maneuver of an octopus-inspired robot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weymouth, G D; Subramaniam, V; Triantafyllou, M S

    2015-02-02

    We design and test an octopus-inspired flexible hull robot that demonstrates outstanding fast-starting performance. The robot is hyper-inflated with water, and then rapidly deflates to expel the fluid so as to power the escape maneuver. Using this robot we verify for the first time in laboratory testing that rapid size-change can substantially reduce separation in bluff bodies traveling several body lengths, and recover fluid energy which can be employed to improve the propulsive performance. The robot is found to experience speeds over ten body lengths per second, exceeding that of a similarly propelled optimally streamlined rigid rocket. The peak net thrust force on the robot is more than 2.6 times that on an optimal rigid body performing the same maneuver, experimentally demonstrating large energy recovery and enabling acceleration greater than 14 body lengths per second squared. Finally, over 53% of the available energy is converted into payload kinetic energy, a performance that exceeds the estimated energy conversion efficiency of fast-starting fish. The Reynolds number based on final speed and robot length is [Formula: see text]. We use the experimental data to establish a fundamental deflation scaling parameter [Formula: see text] which characterizes the mechanisms of flow control via shape change. Based on this scaling parameter, we find that the fast-starting performance improves with increasing size.

  9. Improvements to robotics-inspired conformational sampling in rosetta.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amelie Stein

    Full Text Available To accurately predict protein conformations in atomic detail, a computational method must be capable of sampling models sufficiently close to the native structure. All-atom sampling is difficult because of the vast number of possible conformations and extremely rugged energy landscapes. Here, we test three sampling strategies to address these difficulties: conformational diversification, intensification of torsion and omega-angle sampling and parameter annealing. We evaluate these strategies in the context of the robotics-based kinematic closure (KIC method for local conformational sampling in Rosetta on an established benchmark set of 45 12-residue protein segments without regular secondary structure. We quantify performance as the fraction of sub-Angstrom models generated. While improvements with individual strategies are only modest, the combination of intensification and annealing strategies into a new "next-generation KIC" method yields a four-fold increase over standard KIC in the median percentage of sub-Angstrom models across the dataset. Such improvements enable progress on more difficult problems, as demonstrated on longer segments, several of which could not be accurately remodeled with previous methods. Given its improved sampling capability, next-generation KIC should allow advances in other applications such as local conformational remodeling of multiple segments simultaneously, flexible backbone sequence design, and development of more accurate energy functions.

  10. Human-inspired feedback synergies for environmental interaction with a dexterous robotic hand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kent, Benjamin A; Engeberg, Erik D

    2014-11-07

    Effortless control of the human hand is mediated by the physical and neural couplings inherent in the structure of the hand. This concept was explored for environmental interaction tasks with the human hand, and a novel human-inspired feedback synergy (HFS) controller was developed for a robotic hand which synchronized position and force feedback signals to mimic observed human hand motions. This was achieved by first recording the finger joint motion profiles of human test subjects, where it was observed that the subjects would extend their fingers to maintain a natural hand posture when interacting with different surfaces. The resulting human joint angle data were used as inspiration to develop the HFS controller for the anthropomorphic robotic hand, which incorporated finger abduction and force feedback in the control laws for finger extension. Experimental results showed that by projecting a broader view of the tasks at hand to each specific joint, the HFS controller produced hand motion profiles that closely mimic the observed human responses and allowed the robotic manipulator to interact with the surfaces while maintaining a natural hand posture. Additionally, the HFS controller enabled the robotic hand to autonomously traverse vertical step discontinuities without prior knowledge of the environment, visual feedback, or traditional trajectory planning techniques.

  11. Human-inspired feedback synergies for environmental interaction with a dexterous robotic hand

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kent, Benjamin A; Engeberg, Erik D

    2014-01-01

    Effortless control of the human hand is mediated by the physical and neural couplings inherent in the structure of the hand. This concept was explored for environmental interaction tasks with the human hand, and a novel human-inspired feedback synergy (HFS) controller was developed for a robotic hand which synchronized position and force feedback signals to mimic observed human hand motions. This was achieved by first recording the finger joint motion profiles of human test subjects, where it was observed that the subjects would extend their fingers to maintain a natural hand posture when interacting with different surfaces. The resulting human joint angle data were used as inspiration to develop the HFS controller for the anthropomorphic robotic hand, which incorporated finger abduction and force feedback in the control laws for finger extension. Experimental results showed that by projecting a broader view of the tasks at hand to each specific joint, the HFS controller produced hand motion profiles that closely mimic the observed human responses and allowed the robotic manipulator to interact with the surfaces while maintaining a natural hand posture. Additionally, the HFS controller enabled the robotic hand to autonomously traverse vertical step discontinuities without prior knowledge of the environment, visual feedback, or traditional trajectory planning techniques. (paper)

  12. Designing collective behavior in a termite-inspired robot construction team.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Werfel, Justin; Petersen, Kirstin; Nagpal, Radhika

    2014-02-14

    Complex systems are characterized by many independent components whose low-level actions produce collective high-level results. Predicting high-level results given low-level rules is a key open challenge; the inverse problem, finding low-level rules that give specific outcomes, is in general still less understood. We present a multi-agent construction system inspired by mound-building termites, solving such an inverse problem. A user specifies a desired structure, and the system automatically generates low-level rules for independent climbing robots that guarantee production of that structure. Robots use only local sensing and coordinate their activity via the shared environment. We demonstrate the approach via a physical realization with three autonomous climbing robots limited to onboard sensing. This work advances the aim of engineering complex systems that achieve specific human-designed goals.

  13. Shape memory alloy-based small crawling robots inspired by C. elegans

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yuk, Hyunwoo; Kim, Daeyeon; Shin, Jennifer H [Department of Mechanical Engineering, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, 291 Daehak-ro, Yuseong-gu, Daejeon (Korea, Republic of); Lee, Honggu; Jo, Sungho, E-mail: shjo@kaist.ac.kr, E-mail: j_shin@kaist.ac.kr [Department of Computer Science, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, 291 Daehak-ro, Yuseong-gu, Daejeon (Korea, Republic of)

    2011-12-15

    Inspired by its simple musculature, actuation and motion mechanisms, we have developed a small crawling robot that closely mimics the model organism of our choice: Caenorhabditis elegans. A thermal shape memory alloy (SMA) was selected as an actuator due to the similarities of its properties to C. elegans muscles. Based on the anatomy of C. elegans, a 12-unit robot was designed to generate a sinusoidal undulating motion. Each body unit consisting of a pair of SMA actuators is serially connected by rigid links with an embedded motion control circuit. A simple binary operation-based motion control mechanism was implemented using a microcontroller. The assembled robot can execute C. elegans-like motion with a 0.17 Hz undulation frequency. Its motion is comparable to that of a real worm.

  14. Kirigami artificial muscles with complex biologically inspired morphologies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sareh, Sina; Rossiter, Jonathan

    2013-01-01

    In this paper we present bio-inspired smart structures which exploit the actuation of flexible ionic polymer composites and the kirigami design principle. Kirigami design is used to convert planar actuators into active 3D structures capable of large out-of-plane displacement and that replicate biological mechanisms. Here we present the burstbot, a fluid control and propulsion mechanism based on the atrioventricular cuspid valve, and the vortibot, a spiral actuator based on Vorticella campanula, a ciliate protozoa. Models derived from biological counterparts are used as a platform for design optimization and actuator performance measurement. The symmetric and asymmetric fluid interactions of the burstbot are investigated and the effectiveness in fluid transport applications is demonstrated. The vortibot actuator is geometrically optimized as a camera positioner capable of 360° scanning. Experimental results for a one-turn spiral actuator show complex actuation derived from a single degree of freedom control signal. (paper)

  15. Toward Self-Growing Soft Robots Inspired by Plant Roots and Based on Additive Manufacturing Technologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sadeghi, Ali; Mondini, Alessio; Mazzolai, Barbara

    2017-09-01

    In this article, we present a novel class of robots that are able to move by growing and building their own structure. In particular, taking inspiration by the growing abilities of plant roots, we designed and developed a plant root-like robot that creates its body through an additive manufacturing process. Each robotic root includes a tubular body, a growing head, and a sensorized tip that commands the robot behaviors. The growing head is a customized three-dimensional (3D) printer-like system that builds the tubular body of the root in the format of circular layers by fusing and depositing a thermoplastic material (i.e., polylactic acid [PLA] filament) at the tip level, thus obtaining movement by growing. A differential deposition of the material can create an asymmetry that results in curvature of the built structure, providing the possibility of root bending to follow or escape from a stimulus or to reach a desired point in space. Taking advantage of these characteristics, the robotic roots are able to move inside a medium by growing their body. In this article, we describe the design of the growing robot together with the modeling of the deposition process and the description of the implemented growing movement strategy. Experiments were performed in air and in an artificial medium to verify the functionalities and to evaluate the robot performance. The results showed that the robotic root, with a diameter of 50 mm, grows with a speed of up to 4 mm/min, overcoming medium pressure of up to 37 kPa (i.e., it is able to lift up to 6 kg) and bending with a minimum radius of 100 mm.

  16. A biologically inspired neural net for trajectory formation and obstacle avoidance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glasius, R; Komoda, A; Gielen, S C

    1996-06-01

    In this paper we present a biologically inspired two-layered neural network for trajectory formation and obstacle avoidance. The two topographically ordered neural maps consist of analog neurons having continuous dynamics. The first layer, the sensory map, receives sensory information and builds up an activity pattern which contains the optimal solution (i.e. shortest path without collisions) for any given set of current position, target positions and obstacle positions. Targets and obstacles are allowed to move, in which case the activity pattern in the sensory map will change accordingly. The time evolution of the neural activity in the second layer, the motor map, results in a moving cluster of activity, which can be interpreted as a population vector. Through the feedforward connections between the two layers, input of the sensory map directs the movement of the cluster along the optimal path from the current position of the cluster to the target position. The smooth trajectory is the result of the intrinsic dynamics of the network only. No supervisor is required. The output of the motor map can be used for direct control of an autonomous system in a cluttered environment or for control of the actuators of a biological limb or robot manipulator. The system is able to reach a target even in the presence of an external perturbation. Computer simulations of a point robot and a multi-joint manipulator illustrate the theory.

  17. Cockroaches traverse crevices, crawl rapidly in confined spaces, and inspire a soft, legged robot

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayaram, Kaushik; Full, Robert J.

    2016-01-01

    Jointed exoskeletons permit rapid appendage-driven locomotion but retain the soft-bodied, shape-changing ability to explore confined environments. We challenged cockroaches with horizontal crevices smaller than a quarter of their standing body height. Cockroaches rapidly traversed crevices in 300–800 ms by compressing their body 40–60%. High-speed videography revealed crevice negotiation to be a complex, discontinuous maneuver. After traversing horizontal crevices to enter a vertically confined space, cockroaches crawled at velocities approaching 60 cm⋅s−1, despite body compression and postural changes. Running velocity, stride length, and stride period only decreased at the smallest crevice height (4 mm), whereas slipping and the probability of zigzag paths increased. To explain confined-space running performance limits, we altered ceiling and ground friction. Increased ceiling friction decreased velocity by decreasing stride length and increasing slipping. Increased ground friction resulted in velocity and stride length attaining a maximum at intermediate friction levels. These data support a model of an unexplored mode of locomotion—“body-friction legged crawling” with body drag, friction-dominated leg thrust, but no media flow as in air, water, or sand. To define the limits of body compression in confined spaces, we conducted dynamic compressive cycle tests on living animals. Exoskeletal strength allowed cockroaches to withstand forces 300 times body weight when traversing the smallest crevices and up to nearly 900 times body weight without injury. Cockroach exoskeletons provided biological inspiration for the manufacture of an origami-style, soft, legged robot that can locomote rapidly in both open and confined spaces. PMID:26858443

  18. Mechanical properties of a bio-inspired robotic knifefish with an undulatory propulsor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Curet, Oscar M; Patankar, Neelesh A; MacIver, Malcolm A; Lauder, George V

    2011-01-01

    South American electric knifefish are a leading model system within neurobiology. Recent efforts have focused on understanding their biomechanics and relating this to their neural processing strategies. Knifefish swim by means of an undulatory fin that runs most of the length of their body, affixed to the belly. Propelling themselves with this fin enables them to keep their body relatively straight while swimming, enabling straightforward robotic implementation with a rigid hull. In this study, we examined the basic properties of undulatory swimming through use of a robot that was similar in some key respects to the knifefish. As we varied critical fin kinematic variables such as frequency, amplitude, and wavelength of sinusoidal traveling waves, we measured the force generated by the robot when it swam against a stationary sensor, and its velocity while swimming freely within a flow tunnel system. Our results show that there is an optimal operational region in the fin's kinematic parameter space. The optimal actuation parameters found for the robotic knifefish are similar to previously observed parameters for the black ghost knifefish, Apteronotus albifrons. Finally, we used our experimental results to show how the force generated by the robotic fin can be decomposed into thrust and drag terms. Our findings are useful for future bio-inspired underwater vehicles as well as for understanding the mechanics of knifefish swimming.

  19. Dynamics of underwater legged locomotion: modeling and experiments on an octopus-inspired robot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calisti, M; Corucci, F; Arienti, A; Laschi, C

    2015-07-30

    This paper studies underwater legged locomotion (ULL) by means of a robotic octopus-inspired prototype and its associated model. Two different types of propulsive actions are embedded into the robot model: reaction forces due to leg contact with the ground and hydrodynamic forces such as the drag arising from the sculling motion of the legs. Dynamic parameters of the model are estimated by means of evolutionary techniques and subsequently the model is exploited to highlight some distinctive features of ULL. Specifically, the separation between the center of buoyancy (CoB)/center of mass and density affect the stability and speed of the robot, whereas the sculling movements contribute to propelling the robot even when its legs are detached from the ground. The relevance of these effects is demonstrated through robotic experiments and model simulations; moreover, by slightly changing the position of the CoB in the presence of the same feed-forward activation, a number of different behaviors (i.e. forward and backward locomotion at different speeds) are achieved.

  20. Adaptive Fuzzy-Lyapunov Controller Using Biologically Inspired Swarm Intelligence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alejandro Carrasco Elizalde

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available The collective behaviour of swarms produces smarter actions than those achieved by a single individual. Colonies of ants, flocks of birds and fish schools are examples of swarms interacting with their environment to achieve a common goal. This cooperative biological intelligence is the inspiration for an adaptive fuzzy controller developed in this paper. Swarm intelligence is used to adjust the parameters of the membership functions used in the adaptive fuzzy controller. The rules of the controller are designed using a computing-with-words approach called Fuzzy-Lyapunov synthesis to improve the stability and robustness of an adaptive fuzzy controller. Computing-with-words provides a powerful tool to manipulate numbers and symbols, like words in a natural language.

  1. Numerical simulations of odorant detection by biologically inspired sensor arrays

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schuech, R; Stacey, M T; Barad, M F; Koehl, M A R

    2012-01-01

    The antennules of many marine crustaceans enable them to rapidly locate sources of odorant in turbulent environmental flows and may provide biological inspiration for engineered plume sampling systems. A substantial gap in knowledge concerns how the physical interaction between a sensing device and the chemical filaments forming a turbulent plume affects odorant detection and filters the information content of the plume. We modeled biological arrays of chemosensory hairs as infinite arrays of odorant flux-detecting cylinders and simulated the fluid flow around and odorant flux into the hair-like sensors as they intercepted a single odorant filament. As array geometry and sampling kinematics were varied, we quantified distortion of the flux time series relative to the spatial shape of the original odorant filament as well as flux metrics that may be important to both organisms and engineered systems attempting to measure plume structure and/or identify chemical composition. The most important predictor of signal distortion is the ratio of sensor diameter to odorant filament width. Achieving high peak properties (e.g. sharpness) of the flux time series and maximizing the total number of odorant molecules detected appear to be mutually exclusive design goals. Sensor arrays inspired specifically by the spiny lobster Panulirus argus and mantis shrimp Gonodactylaceus falcatus introduce little signal distortion but these species' neural systems may not be able to resolve plume structure at the level of individual filaments via temporal properties of the odorant flux. Current chemical sensors are similarly constrained. Our results suggest either that the spatial distribution of flux across the aesthetasc array is utilized by P. argus and G. falcatus, or that such high spatiotemporal resolution is unnecessary for effective plume tracking.

  2. Robot Deception and Squirrel Behavior: A Case Study in Bio-inspired Robotics

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-08-01

    soccer , and handball (Brault, Bideau, Craig, & Kkulpa, 2010; Dessing & Craig, 2010; Vignais, Kulpa, Craig, Brault, Multon, & Bideau, 2010...Robots , 1 (1), 27-52. Barnes, J. A. (1994). A pack of lies: Towards a sociology of lying. . Cambridge University press. Baron-Cohen, S. (2007). I

  3. Locomotion of inchworm-inspired robot made of smart soft composite (SSC)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang, Wei; Lee, Jang-Yeob; Rodrigue, Hugo; Song, Sung-Hyuk; Ahn, Sung-Hoon; Chu, Won-Shik

    2014-01-01

    A soft-bodied robot made of smart soft composite with inchworm-inspired locomotion capable of both two-way linear and turning movement has been proposed, developed, and tested. The robot was divided into three functional parts based on the different functions of the inchworm: the body, the back foot, and the front foot. Shape memory alloy wires were embedded longitudinally in a soft polymer to imitate the longitudinal muscle fibers that control the abdominal contractions of the inchworm during locomotion. Each foot of the robot has three segments with different friction coefficients to implement the anchor and sliding movement. Then, utilizing actuation patterns between the body and feet based on the looping gait, the robot achieves a biomimetic inchworm gait. Experiments were conducted to evaluate the robot’s locomotive performance for both linear locomotion and turning movement. Results show that the proposed robot’s stride length was nearly one third of its body length, with a maximum linear speed of 3.6 mm s −1 , a linear locomotion efficiency of 96.4%, a maximum turning capability of 4.3 degrees per stride, and a turning locomotion efficiency of 39.7%. (paper)

  4. GoQBot: a caterpillar-inspired soft-bodied rolling robot

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lin, Huai-Ti; Trimmer, Barry; Leisk, Gary G

    2011-01-01

    Rolling locomotion using an external force such as gravity has evolved many times. However, some caterpillars can curl into a wheel and generate their own rolling momentum as part of an escape repertoire. This change in body conformation occurs well within 100 ms and generates a linear velocity over 0.2 m s -1 , making it one of the fastest self-propelled wheeling behaviors in nature. Inspired by this behavior, we construct a soft-bodied robot to explore the dynamics and control issues of ballistic rolling. This robot, called GoQBot, closely mimics caterpillar rolling. Analyzing the whole body kinematics and 2D ground reaction forces at the robot ground anchor reveals about 1G of acceleration and more than 200 rpm of angular velocity. As a novel rolling robot, GoQBot demonstrates how morphing can produce new modes of locomotion. Furthermore, mechanical coupling of the actuators improves body coordination without sensory feedback. Such coupling is intrinsic to soft-bodied animals because there are no joints to isolate muscle-generated movements. Finally, GoQBot provides an estimate of the mechanical power for caterpillar rolling that is comparable to that of a locust jump. How caterpillar musculature produces such power in such a short time is yet to be discovered.

  5. GoQBot: a caterpillar-inspired soft-bodied rolling robot

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lin, Huai-Ti; Trimmer, Barry [Department of Biology, Tufts University, 163 Packard Avenue, Medford, MA 02155 (United States); Leisk, Gary G, E-mail: huaiti.lin@gmail.com, E-mail: gary.leisk@tufts.edu, E-mail: barry.trimmer@tufts.edu [Department of Mechanical Engineering, Tufts University, 200 College Avenue, Medford, MA 02155 (United States)

    2011-06-15

    Rolling locomotion using an external force such as gravity has evolved many times. However, some caterpillars can curl into a wheel and generate their own rolling momentum as part of an escape repertoire. This change in body conformation occurs well within 100 ms and generates a linear velocity over 0.2 m s{sup -1}, making it one of the fastest self-propelled wheeling behaviors in nature. Inspired by this behavior, we construct a soft-bodied robot to explore the dynamics and control issues of ballistic rolling. This robot, called GoQBot, closely mimics caterpillar rolling. Analyzing the whole body kinematics and 2D ground reaction forces at the robot ground anchor reveals about 1G of acceleration and more than 200 rpm of angular velocity. As a novel rolling robot, GoQBot demonstrates how morphing can produce new modes of locomotion. Furthermore, mechanical coupling of the actuators improves body coordination without sensory feedback. Such coupling is intrinsic to soft-bodied animals because there are no joints to isolate muscle-generated movements. Finally, GoQBot provides an estimate of the mechanical power for caterpillar rolling that is comparable to that of a locust jump. How caterpillar musculature produces such power in such a short time is yet to be discovered.

  6. Progress and Opportunities in Soft Photonics and Biologically Inspired Optics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolle, Mathias; Lee, Seungwoo

    2018-01-01

    Optical components made fully or partially from reconfigurable, stimuli-responsive, soft solids or fluids-collectively referred to as soft photonics-are poised to form the platform for tunable optical devices with unprecedented functionality and performance characteristics. Currently, however, soft solid and fluid material systems still represent an underutilized class of materials in the optical engineers' toolbox. This is in part due to challenges in fabrication, integration, and structural control on the nano- and microscale associated with the application of soft components in optics. These challenges might be addressed with the help of a resourceful ally: nature. Organisms from many different phyla have evolved an impressive arsenal of light manipulation strategies that rely on the ability to generate and dynamically reconfigure hierarchically structured, complex optical material designs, often involving soft or fluid components. A comprehensive understanding of design concepts, structure formation principles, material integration, and control mechanisms employed in biological photonic systems will allow this study to challenge current paradigms in optical technology. This review provides an overview of recent developments in the fields of soft photonics and biologically inspired optics, emphasizes the ties between the two fields, and outlines future opportunities that result from advancements in soft and bioinspired photonics. © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  7. Biologically inspired collision avoidance system for unmanned vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortiz, Fernando E.; Graham, Brett; Spagnoli, Kyle; Kelmelis, Eric J.

    2009-05-01

    In this project, we collaborate with researchers in the neuroscience department at the University of Delaware to develop an Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA)-based embedded computer, inspired by the brains of small vertebrates (fish). The mechanisms of object detection and avoidance in fish have been extensively studied by our Delaware collaborators. The midbrain optic tectum is a biological multimodal navigation controller capable of processing input from all senses that convey spatial information, including vision, audition, touch, and lateral-line (water current sensing in fish). Unfortunately, computational complexity makes these models too slow for use in real-time applications. These simulations are run offline on state-of-the-art desktop computers, presenting a gap between the application and the target platform: a low-power embedded device. EM Photonics has expertise in developing of high-performance computers based on commodity platforms such as graphic cards (GPUs) and FPGAs. FPGAs offer (1) high computational power, low power consumption and small footprint (in line with typical autonomous vehicle constraints), and (2) the ability to implement massively-parallel computational architectures, which can be leveraged to closely emulate biological systems. Combining UD's brain modeling algorithms and the power of FPGAs, this computer enables autonomous navigation in complex environments, and further types of onboard neural processing in future applications.

  8. Posture Control—Human-Inspired Approaches for Humanoid Robot Benchmarking: Conceptualizing Tests, Protocols and Analyses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Mergner

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Posture control is indispensable for both humans and humanoid robots, which becomes especially evident when performing sensorimotor tasks such as moving on compliant terrain or interacting with the environment. Posture control is therefore targeted in recent proposals of robot benchmarking in order to advance their development. This Methods article suggests corresponding robot tests of standing balance, drawing inspirations from the human sensorimotor system and presenting examples from robot experiments. To account for a considerable technical and algorithmic diversity among robots, we focus in our tests on basic posture control mechanisms, which provide humans with an impressive postural versatility and robustness. Specifically, we focus on the mechanically challenging balancing of the whole body above the feet in the sagittal plane around the ankle joints in concert with the upper body balancing around the hip joints. The suggested tests target three key issues of human balancing, which appear equally relevant for humanoid bipeds: (1 four basic physical disturbances (support surface (SS tilt and translation, field and contact forces may affect the balancing in any given degree of freedom (DoF. Targeting these disturbances allows us to abstract from the manifold of possible behavioral tasks. (2 Posture control interacts in a conflict-free way with the control of voluntary movements for undisturbed movement execution, both with “reactive” balancing of external disturbances and “proactive” balancing of self-produced disturbances from the voluntary movements. Our proposals therefore target both types of disturbances and their superposition. (3 Relevant for both versatility and robustness of the control, linkages between the posture control mechanisms across DoFs provide their functional cooperation and coordination at will and on functional demands. The suggested tests therefore include ankle-hip coordination. Suggested benchmarking

  9. Training mechanical engineering students to utilize biological inspiration during product development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruck, Hugh A; Gershon, Alan L; Golden, Ira; Gupta, Satyandra K; Gyger, Lawrence S; Magrab, Edward B; Spranklin, Brent W

    2007-12-01

    The use of bio-inspiration for the development of new products and devices requires new educational tools for students consisting of appropriate design and manufacturing technologies, as well as curriculum. At the University of Maryland, new educational tools have been developed that introduce bio-inspired product realization to undergraduate mechanical engineering students. These tools include the development of a bio-inspired design repository, a concurrent fabrication and assembly manufacturing technology, a series of undergraduate curriculum modules and a new senior elective in the bio-inspired robotics area. This paper first presents an overview of the two new design and manufacturing technologies that enable students to realize bio-inspired products, and describes how these technologies are integrated into the undergraduate educational experience. Then, the undergraduate curriculum modules are presented, which provide students with the fundamental design and manufacturing principles needed to support bio-inspired product and device development. Finally, an elective bio-inspired robotics project course is present, which provides undergraduates with the opportunity to demonstrate the application of the knowledge acquired through the curriculum modules in their senior year using the new design and manufacturing technologies.

  10. A model of engineering materials inspired by biological tissues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Holeček M.

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available The perfect ability of living tissues to control and adapt their mechanical properties to varying external conditions may be an inspiration for designing engineering materials. An interesting example is the smooth muscle tissue since this "material" is able to change its global mechanical properties considerably by a subtle mechanism within individual muscle cells. Multi-scale continuum models may be useful in designing essentially simpler engineering materials having similar properties. As an illustration we present the model of an incompressible material whose microscopic structure is formed by flexible, soft but incompressible balls connected mutually by linear springs. This simple model, however, shows a nontrivial nonlinear behavior caused by the incompressibility of balls and is very sensitive on some microscopic parameters. It may elucidate the way by which "small" changes in biopolymer networks within individual muscular cells may control the stiffness of the biological tissue, which outlines a way of designing similar engineering materials. The 'balls and springs' material presents also prestress-induced stiffening and allows elucidating a contribution of extracellular fluids into the tissue’s viscous properties.

  11. Biologically inspired EM image alignment and neural reconstruction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knowles-Barley, Seymour; Butcher, Nancy J; Meinertzhagen, Ian A; Armstrong, J Douglas

    2011-08-15

    Three-dimensional reconstruction of consecutive serial-section transmission electron microscopy (ssTEM) images of neural tissue currently requires many hours of manual tracing and annotation. Several computational techniques have already been applied to ssTEM images to facilitate 3D reconstruction and ease this burden. Here, we present an alternative computational approach for ssTEM image analysis. We have used biologically inspired receptive fields as a basis for a ridge detection algorithm to identify cell membranes, synaptic contacts and mitochondria. Detected line segments are used to improve alignment between consecutive images and we have joined small segments of membrane into cell surfaces using a dynamic programming algorithm similar to the Needleman-Wunsch and Smith-Waterman DNA sequence alignment procedures. A shortest path-based approach has been used to close edges and achieve image segmentation. Partial reconstructions were automatically generated and used as a basis for semi-automatic reconstruction of neural tissue. The accuracy of partial reconstructions was evaluated and 96% of membrane could be identified at the cost of 13% false positive detections. An open-source reference implementation is available in the Supplementary information. seymour.kb@ed.ac.uk; douglas.armstrong@ed.ac.uk Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.

  12. Flytrap-inspired robot using structurally integrated actuation based on bistability and a developable surface.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Seung-Won; Koh, Je-Sung; Lee, Jong-Gu; Ryu, Junghyun; Cho, Maenghyo; Cho, Kyu-Jin

    2014-09-01

    The Venus flytrap uses bistability, the structural characteristic of its leaf, to actuate the leaf's rapid closing motion for catching its prey. This paper presents a flytrap-inspired robot and novel actuation mechanism that exploits the structural characteristics of this structure and a developable surface. We focus on the concept of exploiting structural characteristics for actuation. Using shape memory alloy (SMA), the robot actuates artificial leaves made from asymmetrically laminated carbon fiber reinforced prepregs. We exploit two distinct structural characteristics of the leaves. First, the bistability acts as an implicit actuator enabling rapid morphing motion. Second, the developable surface has a kinematic constraint that constrains the curvature of the artificial leaf. Due to this constraint, the curved artificial leaf can be unbent by bending the straight edge orthogonal to the curve. The bending propagates from one edge to the entire surface and eventually generates an overall shape change. The curvature change of the artificial leaf is 18 m(-1) within 100 ms when closing. Experiments show that these actuation mechanisms facilitate the generation of a rapid and large morphing motion of the flytrap robot by one-way actuation of the SMA actuators at a local position.

  13. A jellyfish-inspired jet propulsion robot actuated by an iris mechanism

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Marut, Kenneth; Stewart, Colin; Michael, Tyler; Villanueva, Alex; Priya, Shashank

    2013-01-01

    A jellyfish-inspired jet propulsion robot (JetPRo) is designed, fabricated, and characterized with the objective of creating a fast-swimming uncrewed undersea vehicle. JetPRo measures 7.9 cm in height, 5.7 cm in diameter and is designed to mimic the proficient jetting propulsion mechanism used by the hydromedusa Sarsia tubulosa, which measures approximately 1 cm in diameter. In order to achieve the uniform-bell contraction used by S. tubulosa, we develop a novel circumferential actuation technique based on a mechanical iris diaphragm. When triggered, this mechanism induces a volumetric change of a deformable silicone cavity to expel a jet of fluid and produces positive thrust. A theoretical jetting model is used to optimize JetPRo’s gait for maximum steady-state swimming velocity, a result achieved by minimizing the timing between the contraction and relaxation phases. We validate this finding empirically and quantify the swimming performance of the robot using video tracking and time resolved digital particle image velocimetry. JetPRo was able to produce discrete vortex rings shed before pinch off and swim upwards with a maximum steady-state velocity of 11.6 cm s −1 , outperforming current state-of-the-art robotic jellyfish in velocity as well as diameter-normalized velocity. (paper)

  14. Flytrap-inspired robot using structurally integrated actuation based on bistability and a developable surface

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Seung-Won; Koh, Je-Sung; Cho, Kyu-Jin; Lee, Jong-Gu; Ryu, Junghyun; Cho, Maenghyo

    2014-01-01

    The Venus flytrap uses bistability, the structural characteristic of its leaf, to actuate the leaf's rapid closing motion for catching its prey. This paper presents a flytrap-inspired robot and novel actuation mechanism that exploits the structural characteristics of this structure and a developable surface. We focus on the concept of exploiting structural characteristics for actuation. Using shape memory alloy (SMA), the robot actuates artificial leaves made from asymmetrically laminated carbon fiber reinforced prepregs. We exploit two distinct structural characteristics of the leaves. First, the bistability acts as an implicit actuator enabling rapid morphing motion. Second, the developable surface has a kinematic constraint that constrains the curvature of the artificial leaf. Due to this constraint, the curved artificial leaf can be unbent by bending the straight edge orthogonal to the curve. The bending propagates from one edge to the entire surface and eventually generates an overall shape change. The curvature change of the artificial leaf is 18 m −1  within 100 ms when closing. Experiments show that these actuation mechanisms facilitate the generation of a rapid and large morphing motion of the flytrap robot by one-way actuation of the SMA actuators at a local position. (paper)

  15. Constrained VPH+: a local path planning algorithm for a bio-inspired crawling robot with customized ultrasonic scanning sensor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rao, Akshay; Elara, Mohan Rajesh; Elangovan, Karthikeyan

    This paper aims to develop a local path planning algorithm for a bio-inspired, reconfigurable crawling robot. A detailed description of the robotic platform is first provided, and the suitability for deployment of each of the current state-of-the-art local path planners is analyzed after an extensive literature review. The Enhanced Vector Polar Histogram algorithm is described and reformulated to better fit the requirements of the platform. The algorithm is deployed on the robotic platform in crawling configuration and favorably compared with other state-of-the-art local path planning algorithms.

  16. A bio-inspired kinematic controller for obstacle avoidance during reaching tasks with real robots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srinivasa, Narayan; Bhattacharyya, Rajan; Sundareswara, Rashmi; Lee, Craig; Grossberg, Stephen

    2012-11-01

    This paper describes a redundant robot arm that is capable of learning to reach for targets in space in a self-organized fashion while avoiding obstacles. Self-generated movement commands that activate correlated visual, spatial and motor information are used to learn forward and inverse kinematic control models while moving in obstacle-free space using the Direction-to-Rotation Transform (DIRECT). Unlike prior DIRECT models, the learning process in this work was realized using an online Fuzzy ARTMAP learning algorithm. The DIRECT-based kinematic controller is fault tolerant and can handle a wide range of perturbations such as joint locking and the use of tools despite not having experienced them during learning. The DIRECT model was extended based on a novel reactive obstacle avoidance direction (DIRECT-ROAD) model to enable redundant robots to avoid obstacles in environments with simple obstacle configurations. However, certain configurations of obstacles in the environment prevented the robot from reaching the target with purely reactive obstacle avoidance. To address this complexity, a self-organized process of mental rehearsals of movements was modeled, inspired by human and animal experiments on reaching, to generate plans for movement execution using DIRECT-ROAD in complex environments. These mental rehearsals or plans are self-generated by using the Fuzzy ARTMAP algorithm to retrieve multiple solutions for reaching each target while accounting for all the obstacles in its environment. The key aspects of the proposed novel controller were illustrated first using simple examples. Experiments were then performed on real robot platforms to demonstrate successful obstacle avoidance during reaching tasks in real-world environments. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Neuro-Inspired Spike-Based Motion: From Dynamic Vision Sensor to Robot Motor Open-Loop Control through Spike-VITE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fernando Perez-Peña

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we present a complete spike-based architecture: from a Dynamic Vision Sensor (retina to a stereo head robotic platform. The aim of this research is to reproduce intended movements performed by humans taking into account as many features as possible from the biological point of view. This paper fills the gap between current spike silicon sensors and robotic actuators by applying a spike processing strategy to the data flows in real time. The architecture is divided into layers: the retina, visual information processing, the trajectory generator layer which uses a neuroinspired algorithm (SVITE that can be replicated into as many times as DoF the robot has; and finally the actuation layer to supply the spikes to the robot (using PFM. All the layers do their tasks in a spike-processing mode, and they communicate each other through the neuro-inspired AER protocol. The open-loop controller is implemented on FPGA using AER interfaces developed by RTC Lab. Experimental results reveal the viability of this spike-based controller. Two main advantages are: low hardware resources (2% of a Xilinx Spartan 6 and power requirements (3.4 W to control a robot with a high number of DoF (up to 100 for a Xilinx Spartan 6. It also evidences the suitable use of AER as a communication protocol between processing and actuation.

  18. Neuro-Inspired Spike-Based Motion: From Dynamic Vision Sensor to Robot Motor Open-Loop Control through Spike-VITE

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perez-Peña, Fernando; Morgado-Estevez, Arturo; Linares-Barranco, Alejandro; Jimenez-Fernandez, Angel; Gomez-Rodriguez, Francisco; Jimenez-Moreno, Gabriel; Lopez-Coronado, Juan

    2013-01-01

    In this paper we present a complete spike-based architecture: from a Dynamic Vision Sensor (retina) to a stereo head robotic platform. The aim of this research is to reproduce intended movements performed by humans taking into account as many features as possible from the biological point of view. This paper fills the gap between current spike silicon sensors and robotic actuators by applying a spike processing strategy to the data flows in real time. The architecture is divided into layers: the retina, visual information processing, the trajectory generator layer which uses a neuroinspired algorithm (SVITE) that can be replicated into as many times as DoF the robot has; and finally the actuation layer to supply the spikes to the robot (using PFM). All the layers do their tasks in a spike-processing mode, and they communicate each other through the neuro-inspired AER protocol. The open-loop controller is implemented on FPGA using AER interfaces developed by RTC Lab. Experimental results reveal the viability of this spike-based controller. Two main advantages are: low hardware resources (2% of a Xilinx Spartan 6) and power requirements (3.4 W) to control a robot with a high number of DoF (up to 100 for a Xilinx Spartan 6). It also evidences the suitable use of AER as a communication protocol between processing and actuation. PMID:24264330

  19. Design and control of a bio-inspired soft wearable robotic device for ankle–foot rehabilitation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Park, Yong-Lae; Chen, Bor-rong; Pérez-Arancibia, Néstor O; Young, Diana; Wood, Robert J; Nagpal, Radhika; Stirling, Leia; Goldfield, Eugene C

    2014-01-01

    We describe the design and control of a wearable robotic device powered by pneumatic artificial muscle actuators for use in ankle–foot rehabilitation. The design is inspired by the biological musculoskeletal system of the human foot and lower leg, mimicking the morphology and the functionality of the biological muscle–tendon–ligament structure. A key feature of the device is its soft structure that provides active assistance without restricting natural degrees of freedom at the ankle joint. Four pneumatic artificial muscles assist dorsiflexion and plantarflexion as well as inversion and eversion. The prototype is also equipped with various embedded sensors for gait pattern analysis. For the subject tested, the prototype is capable of generating an ankle range of motion of 27° (14° dorsiflexion and 13° plantarflexion). The controllability of the system is experimentally demonstrated using a linear time-invariant (LTI) controller. The controller is found using an identified LTI model of the system, resulting from the interaction of the soft orthotic device with a human leg, and model-based classical control design techniques. The suitability of the proposed control strategy is demonstrated with several angle-reference following experiments. (paper)

  20. Design of a Biomimetic Skin for an Octopus-Inspired Robot - Part Ⅰ: Characterising Octopus Skin

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jinping Hou; Richard H. C. Bonser; George Jeronimidis

    2011-01-01

    Octopus skin samples were tested under quasi-static and scissor cutting conditions to measure the in-plane material properties and fracture toughness. Samples from all eight arms of one octopus were tested statically to investigate how properties vary from arm to arm. Another nine octopus skins were measured to study the influence of body mass on skin properties. Influence of specimen location on skin mechanical properties was also studied. Material properties of skin, i.e. the Young's modulus, ultimate stress, failure strain and fracture toughness have been plotted against the position of skin along the length of arm or body. Statistical studies were carried out to help analyzing experimental data obtained. Results of this work will be used as guidelines for the design and development of artificial skins for an octopus-inspired robot.

  1. Vortex Formation and Acceleration of a Fish-Inspired Robot Performing Starts from Rest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Devoria, Adam; Bapst, Jonathan; Ringuette, Matthew

    2009-11-01

    We investigate the unsteady flow of a fish-inspired robot executing starts from rest, with the objective of understanding the connection among the kinematics, vortex formation, and acceleration performance. Several fish perform ``fast starts,'' where the body bends into a ``C'' or ``S'' shape while turning (phase I), followed by a straightening of the body and caudal fin and a linear acceleration (phase II). The resulting highly 3-D, unsteady vortex formation and its relationship to the acceleration are not well understood. The self-propelled robotic model contains motor-driven joints with programmable motion to emulate phase II of a simplified C-start. The experiments are conducted in a water tank, and the model is constrained to 1 direction along rails. The velocity is measured using digital particle image velocimetry (DPIV) in multiple planes. Vortex boundaries are identified using the finite-time Lyapunov exponent, then the unsteady vortex circulation is computed. The thrust is estimated from the identified vortices, and correlated with the circulation and model acceleration for different kinematics.

  2. Multiple Decoupled CPGs with Local Sensory Feedback for Adaptive Locomotion Behaviors of Bio-inspired Walking Robots

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Shaker Barikhan, Subhi; Wörgötter, Florentin; Manoonpong, Poramate

    2014-01-01

    , and their interactions during body and leg movements through the environment. Based on this concept, we present here an artificial bio-inspired walking system. Its intralimb coordination is formed by multiple decoupled CPGs while its interlimb coordination is attained by the interactions between body dynamics...... and the environment through local sensory feedback of each leg. Simulation results show that this bio-inspired approach generates self-organizing emergent locomotion allowing the robot to adaptively form regular patterns, to stably walk while pushing an object with its front legs or performing multiple stepping...

  3. Soft-robotic esophageal swallowing as a clinically-inspired bolus rheometry technique

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dirven, Steven; Allen, Jacqueline; Xu, Weiliang; Cheng, Leo K

    2017-01-01

    To investigate the impact of viscosity and peristaltic transport parameters on manometric pressure signatures, a reproducible swallowing process is required. Due to inter- and intra-subject variability from swallow to swallow, the human body does not represent an optimal mechanism for such an investigation. A smooth and continuous swallowing soft-robot has been developed to produce biomimetic swallowing trajectories, and is proposed to operate as a bench-top bolus rheometric investigation method. The method compares conventional viscometry and pressure signature findings from robotic swallowing experiments. The robotic aspect of experimentation involved 450 biomimetic swallows (10 repetitions of 45 unique experiments). The method examined swallowing transport in three dimensions: bolus formulation, peristaltic wavelength, and peristaltic velocity, each of which are known to contribute to safe and effective swallowing in vivo . It is found that the pressure gradients and magnitudes are commensurate with clinical reports on biological swallowing, on the order of 100 mmHg peak, however, the relationship between viscosity and pressure signatures is less clear. Bolus transport cannot be predicted as a function of bolus viscosity alone. Traditional viscometric data at 50 s −1 , as used in clinical practice, may not be a strong indicator of swallow effort, safety, or efficacy in vivo . (paper)

  4. A biologically inspired neural network model to transformation invariant object recognition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iftekharuddin, Khan M.; Li, Yaqin; Siddiqui, Faraz

    2007-09-01

    Transformation invariant image recognition has been an active research area due to its widespread applications in a variety of fields such as military operations, robotics, medical practices, geographic scene analysis, and many others. The primary goal for this research is detection of objects in the presence of image transformations such as changes in resolution, rotation, translation, scale and occlusion. We investigate a biologically-inspired neural network (NN) model for such transformation-invariant object recognition. In a classical training-testing setup for NN, the performance is largely dependent on the range of transformation or orientation involved in training. However, an even more serious dilemma is that there may not be enough training data available for successful learning or even no training data at all. To alleviate this problem, a biologically inspired reinforcement learning (RL) approach is proposed. In this paper, the RL approach is explored for object recognition with different types of transformations such as changes in scale, size, resolution and rotation. The RL is implemented in an adaptive critic design (ACD) framework, which approximates the neuro-dynamic programming of an action network and a critic network, respectively. Two ACD algorithms such as Heuristic Dynamic Programming (HDP) and Dual Heuristic dynamic Programming (DHP) are investigated to obtain transformation invariant object recognition. The two learning algorithms are evaluated statistically using simulated transformations in images as well as with a large-scale UMIST face database with pose variations. In the face database authentication case, the 90° out-of-plane rotation of faces from 20 different subjects in the UMIST database is used. Our simulations show promising results for both designs for transformation-invariant object recognition and authentication of faces. Comparing the two algorithms, DHP outperforms HDP in learning capability, as DHP takes fewer steps to

  5. Locomotion Dynamics for Bio-inspired Robots with Soft Appendages: Application to Flapping Flight and Passive Swimming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyer, Frédéric; Porez, Mathieu; Morsli, Ferhat; Morel, Yannick

    2017-08-01

    In animal locomotion, either in fish or flying insects, the use of flexible terminal organs or appendages greatly improves the performance of locomotion (thrust and lift). In this article, we propose a general unified framework for modeling and simulating the (bio-inspired) locomotion of robots using soft organs. The proposed approach is based on the model of Mobile Multibody Systems (MMS). The distributed flexibilities are modeled according to two major approaches: the Floating Frame Approach (FFA) and the Geometrically Exact Approach (GEA). Encompassing these two approaches in the Newton-Euler modeling formalism of robotics, this article proposes a unique modeling framework suited to the fast numerical integration of the dynamics of a MMS in both the FFA and the GEA. This general framework is applied on two illustrative examples drawn from bio-inspired locomotion: the passive swimming in von Karman Vortex Street, and the hovering flight with flexible flapping wings.

  6. Detecting Biological Motion for Human–Robot Interaction: A Link between Perception and Action

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessia Vignolo

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available One of the fundamental skills supporting safe and comfortable interaction between humans is their capability to understand intuitively each other’s actions and intentions. At the basis of this ability is a special-purpose visual processing that human brain has developed to comprehend human motion. Among the first “building blocks” enabling the bootstrapping of such visual processing is the ability to detect movements performed by biological agents in the scene, a skill mastered by human babies in the first days of their life. In this paper, we present a computational model based on the assumption that such visual ability must be based on local low-level visual motion features, which are independent of shape, such as the configuration of the body and perspective. Moreover, we implement it on the humanoid robot iCub, embedding it into a software architecture that leverages the regularities of biological motion also to control robot attention and oculomotor behaviors. In essence, we put forth a model in which the regularities of biological motion link perception and action enabling a robotic agent to follow a human-inspired sensory-motor behavior. We posit that this choice facilitates mutual understanding and goal prediction during collaboration, increasing the pleasantness and safety of the interaction.

  7. First controlled vertical flight of a biologically inspired microrobot

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Perez-Arancibia, Nestor O; Ma, Kevin Y; Greenberg, Jack D; Wood, Robert J [School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138 (United States); Galloway, Kevin C, E-mail: nperez@seas.harvard.edu, E-mail: kevinma@seas.harvard.edu, E-mail: kevin.galloway@wyss.harvard.edu, E-mail: jdgreenb@seas.harvard.edu, E-mail: rjwood@eecs.harvard.edu [Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering, Harvard University, Boston, MA 02115 (United States)

    2011-09-15

    In this paper, we present experimental results on altitude control of a flying microrobot. The problem is approached in two stages. In the first stage, system identification of two relevant subsystems composing the microrobot is performed, using a static flapping experimental setup. In the second stage, the information gathered through the static flapping experiments is employed to design the controller used in vertical flight. The design of the proposed controller relies on the idea of treating an exciting signal as a subsystem of the microrobot. The methods and results presented here are a key step toward achieving total autonomy of bio-inspired flying microrobots.

  8. First controlled vertical flight of a biologically inspired microrobot

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Perez-Arancibia, Nestor O; Ma, Kevin Y; Greenberg, Jack D; Wood, Robert J; Galloway, Kevin C

    2011-01-01

    In this paper, we present experimental results on altitude control of a flying microrobot. The problem is approached in two stages. In the first stage, system identification of two relevant subsystems composing the microrobot is performed, using a static flapping experimental setup. In the second stage, the information gathered through the static flapping experiments is employed to design the controller used in vertical flight. The design of the proposed controller relies on the idea of treating an exciting signal as a subsystem of the microrobot. The methods and results presented here are a key step toward achieving total autonomy of bio-inspired flying microrobots.

  9. Design Approach of Biologically-Inspired Musculoskeletal Humanoids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuto Nakanishi

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available In order to realize more natural and various motions like humans, humanlike musculoskeletal tendon-driven humanoids have been studied. Especially, it is very challenging to design musculoskeletal body structure which consists of complicated bones, redundant powerful and flexible muscles, and large number of distributed sensors. In addition, it is very challenging to reveal humanlike intelligence to manage these complicated musculoskeletal body structure. This paper sums up life-sized musculoskeletal humanoids Kenta, Kotaro, Kenzoh and Kenshiro which we have developed so far, and describes key technologies to develop and control these robots.

  10. Biologically Inspired Target Recognition in Radar Sensor Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liang Qilian

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available One of the great mysteries of the brain is cognitive control. How can the interactions between millions of neurons result in behavior that is coordinated and appears willful and voluntary? There is consensus that it depends on the prefrontal cortex (PFC. Many PFC areas receive converging inputs from at least two sensory modalities. Inspired by human's innate ability to process and integrate information from disparate, network-based sources, we apply human-inspired information integration mechanisms to target detection in cognitive radar sensor network. Humans' information integration mechanisms have been modelled using maximum-likelihood estimation (MLE or soft-max approaches. In this paper, we apply these two algorithms to cognitive radar sensor networks target detection. Discrete-cosine-transform (DCT is used to process the integrated data from MLE or soft-max. We apply fuzzy logic system (FLS to automatic target detection based on the AC power values from DCT. Simulation results show that our MLE-DCT-FLS and soft-max-DCT-FLS approaches perform very well in the radar sensor network target detection, whereas the existing 2D construction algorithm does not work in this study.

  11. Using insects to drive mobile robots - hybrid robots bridge the gap between biological and artificial systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ando, Noriyasu; Kanzaki, Ryohei

    2017-09-01

    The use of mobile robots is an effective method of validating sensory-motor models of animals in a real environment. The well-identified insect sensory-motor systems have been the major targets for modeling. Furthermore, mobile robots implemented with such insect models attract engineers who aim to avail advantages from organisms. However, directly comparing the robots with real insects is still difficult, even if we successfully model the biological systems, because of the physical differences between them. We developed a hybrid robot to bridge the gap. This hybrid robot is an insect-controlled robot, in which a tethered male silkmoth (Bombyx mori) drives the robot in order to localize an odor source. This robot has the following three advantages: 1) from a biomimetic perspective, the robot enables us to evaluate the potential performance of future insect-mimetic robots; 2) from a biological perspective, the robot enables us to manipulate the closed-loop of an onboard insect for further understanding of its sensory-motor system; and 3) the robot enables comparison with insect models as a reference biological system. In this paper, we review the recent works regarding insect-controlled robots and discuss the significance for both engineering and biology. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Mechanization and Control Concepts for Biologically Inspired Micro Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raney, David L.; Slominski, Eric C.

    2003-01-01

    It is possible that MAV designs of the future will exploit flapping flight in order to perform missions that require extreme agility, such as rapid flight beneath a forest canopy or within the confines of a building. Many of nature's most agile flyers generate flapping motions through resonant excitation of an aeroelastically tailored structure: muscle tissue is used to excite a vibratory mode of their flexible wing structure that creates propulsion and lift. A number of MAV concepts have been proposed that would operate in a similar fashion. This paper describes an ongoing research activity in which mechanization and control concepts with application to resonant flapping MAVs are being explored. Structural approaches, mechanical design, sensing and wingbeat control concepts inspired by hummingbirds, bats and insects are examined. Experimental results from a testbed capable of generating vibratory wingbeat patterns that approximately match those exhibited by hummingbirds in hover, cruise, and reverse flight are presented.

  13. Adaptive leg coordination with a biologically inspired neurocontroller

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braught, Grant; Thomopoulos, Stelios C.

    1996-10-01

    Natural selection is responsible for the creation of robust and adaptive control systems. Nature's control systems are created only from primitive building blocks. Using insect neurophysiology as a guide, a neural architecture for leg coordination in a hexapod robot has been developed. Reflex chains and sensory feedback mechanisms from various insects and crustacea form the basis of a pattern generator for intra-leg coordination. The pattern generator contains neural oscillators which learn from sensory feedback to produce stepping patterns. Using sensory feedback as the source of learning information allows the pattern generator to adapt to changes in the leg dynamics due to internal or external causes. A coupling between six of the single leg pattern generators is used to produce the inter-leg coordination necessary to establish stable gaits.

  14. Variable gearing in a biologically inspired pneumatic actuator array

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Azizi, Emanuel; Roberts, Thomas J

    2013-01-01

    A fundamental feature of pennate muscles is that muscle fibers are oriented at an angle to the line of action and rotate as they shorten, becoming more oblique throughout a contraction. This change in fiber orientation (pennation angle) can amplify the shortening velocity of a fiber and increase output velocity of the muscle. The velocity advantage resulting from dynamic changes in pennation angle can be characterized as a gear ratio (muscle velocity/fiber velocity). A recent study has shown that a pennate muscle's gear ratio varies automatically depending on the load such that a muscle operates with a high gear during rapid contractions and low gear during forceful contractions. We examined whether this variable gearing behavior can be replicated in a pennate array of artificial muscles. We used McKibben type pneumatic actuators, which shorten in tension when filled with compressed gas. Similar to muscle fibers, the actuators expand radially during shortening, a feature thought to be a critical part of the variable gearing mechanism in pennate muscles. We arranged McKibben actuators in an array oriented to mimic a pennate muscle, and quantified the system's gear ratio during contraction against a range of loads. Video was used to measure the gear ratio during each contraction. We find that similar to pennate muscles, the gear ratio decreases significantly with increasing load and that variable gearing results from load-dependent variation in the amount of actuator rotation. These results support the idea that variable gearing in pennate muscles is mediated by difference is fiber rotation and the direction of muscle bulging. The behavior of our artificial muscle array also highlights the potential benefits of bio-inspired architectures in artificial muscle arrays, including the ability to vary force and speed automatically in response to variable loading conditions. (paper)

  15. Variable gearing in a biologically inspired pneumatic actuator array.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Azizi, Emanuel; Roberts, Thomas J

    2013-06-01

    A fundamental feature of pennate muscles is that muscle fibers are oriented at an angle to the line of action and rotate as they shorten, becoming more oblique throughout a contraction. This change in fiber orientation (pennation angle) can amplify the shortening velocity of a fiber and increase output velocity of the muscle. The velocity advantage resulting from dynamic changes in pennation angle can be characterized as a gear ratio (muscle velocity/fiber velocity). A recent study has shown that a pennate muscle's gear ratio varies automatically depending on the load such that a muscle operates with a high gear during rapid contractions and low gear during forceful contractions. We examined whether this variable gearing behavior can be replicated in a pennate array of artificial muscles. We used McKibben type pneumatic actuators, which shorten in tension when filled with compressed gas. Similar to muscle fibers, the actuators expand radially during shortening, a feature thought to be a critical part of the variable gearing mechanism in pennate muscles. We arranged McKibben actuators in an array oriented to mimic a pennate muscle, and quantified the system's gear ratio during contraction against a range of loads. Video was used to measure the gear ratio during each contraction. We find that similar to pennate muscles, the gear ratio decreases significantly with increasing load and that variable gearing results from load-dependent variation in the amount of actuator rotation. These results support the idea that variable gearing in pennate muscles is mediated by difference is fiber rotation and the direction of muscle bulging. The behavior of our artificial muscle array also highlights the potential benefits of bio-inspired architectures in artificial muscle arrays, including the ability to vary force and speed automatically in response to variable loading conditions.

  16. VARIABLE GEARING IN A BIOLOGICALLY-INSPIRED PNEUMATIC ACTUATOR ARRAY

    Science.gov (United States)

    Azizi, Emanuel; Roberts, Thomas J.

    2013-01-01

    A fundamental feature of pennate muscles is that muscle fibers are oriented at an angle to the line of action and rotate as they shorten, becoming more oblique throughout a contraction. This change in fiber orientation (pennation angle) can amplify the shortening velocity of a fiber and increase output velocity of the muscle. The velocity advantage resulting from dynamic changes in pennation angle can be characterized as a gear ratio (muscle velocity/fiber velocity). A recent study has shown that a pennate muscle’s gear ratio varies automatically depending on the load such that a muscle operates with a high gear during rapid contractions and low gear during forceful contractions. We examined whether this variable gearing behavior can be replicated in a pennate array of artificial muscles. We used McKibben type pneumatic actuators, which shorten in tension when filled with compressed gas. Similar to muscle fibers, the actuators expand radially during shortening, a feature thought to be a critical part of the variable gearing mechanism in pennate muscles. We arranged McKibben actuators in an array oriented to mimic a pennate muscle, and quantified the system’s gear ratio during contraction against a range of loads. Video was used to measure the gear ratio during each contraction. We find that similar to pennate muscles, the gear ratio decreases significantly with increasing load and that variable gearing results from load-dependent variation in the amount of actuator rotation. These results support the idea that variable gearing in pennate muscles is mediated by difference is fiber rotation and the direction of muscle bulging. The behavior of our artificial muscle array also highlights the potential benefits of bio-inspired architectures in artificial muscle arrays, including the ability to vary force and speed automatically in response to variable loading conditions. PMID:23462288

  17. Biologically inspired autonomous structural materials with controlled toughening and healing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia, Michael E.; Sodano, Henry A.

    2010-04-01

    The field of structural health monitoring (SHM) has made significant contributions in the field of prognosis and damage detection in the past decade. The advantageous use of this technology has not been integrated into operational structures to prevent damage from propagating or to heal injured regions under real time loading conditions. Rather, current systems relay this information to a central processor or human operator, who then determines a course of action such as altering the mission or scheduling repair maintenance. Biological systems exhibit advanced sensory and healing traits that can be applied to the design of material systems. For instance, bone is the major structural component in vertebrates; however, unlike modern structural materials, bone has many properties that make it effective for arresting the propagation of cracks and subsequent healing of the fractured area. The foremost goal for the development of future adaptive structures is to mimic biological systems, similar to bone, such that the material system can detect damage and deploy defensive traits to impede damage from propagating, thus preventing catastrophic failure while in operation. After sensing and stalling the propagation of damage, the structure must then be repaired autonomously using self healing mechanisms motivated by biological systems. Here a novel autonomous system is developed using shape memory polymers (SMPs), that employs an optical fiber network as both a damage detection sensor and a network to deliver stimulus to the damage site initiating adaptation and healing. In the presence of damage the fiber optic fractures allowing a high power laser diode to deposit a controlled level of thermal energy at the fractured sight locally reducing the modulus and blunting the crack tip, which significantly slows the crack growth rate. By applying a pre-induced strain field and utilizing the shape memory recovery effect, thermal energy can be deployed to close the crack and return

  18. Seeing by touch: evaluation of a soft biologically-inspired artificial fingertip in real-time active touch.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Assaf, Tareq; Roke, Calum; Rossiter, Jonathan; Pipe, Tony; Melhuish, Chris

    2014-02-07

    Effective tactile sensing for artificial platforms remains an open issue in robotics. This study investigates the performance of a soft biologically-inspired artificial fingertip in active exploration tasks. The fingertip sensor replicates the mechanisms within human skin and offers a robust solution that can be used both for tactile sensing and gripping/manipulating objects. The softness of the optical sensor's contact surface also allows safer interactions with objects. High-level tactile features such as edges are extrapolated from the sensor's output and the information is used to generate a tactile image. The work presented in this paper aims to investigate and evaluate this artificial fingertip for 2D shape reconstruction. The sensor was mounted on a robot arm to allow autonomous exploration of different objects. The sensor and a number of human participants were then tested for their abilities to track the raised perimeters of different planar objects and compared. By observing the technique and accuracy of the human subjects, simple but effective parameters were determined in order to evaluate the artificial system's performance. The results prove the capability of the sensor in such active exploration tasks, with a comparable performance to the human subjects despite it using tactile data alone whereas the human participants were also able to use proprioceptive cues.

  19. Quantum and classical dynamics in biologically inspired systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Guerreschi, G.

    2012-01-01

    Quantum biology is an emerging field in which traditional believes and paradigms are under examination. Typically, quantum effects are witnessed inside quantum optics or atomic physics laboratories in systems which are kept under control and isolated from any noise source by means of very advanced technology. Biological systems exhibit opposite characteristics: They are usually constituted of macromolecules continuously exposed to a warm and wet environment, well beyond our control; but at the same time, they operate far away from equilibrium. Recently, the experimental observation of excitonic coherence in photosynthetic complexes has con firmed that, in non-equilibrium scenarios, quantum phenomena can survive even in presence of a noisy environment. The challenge faced by the ongoing research is twofold: On one side, considering biological molecules as effective nanomachines, one has to address questions of principle regarding their design and functioning; on the other side, one has to investigate real systems which are experimentally accessible and identify such features in these concrete scenarios. The present thesis contributes to both of these aspects. In Part I, we demonstrate how entanglement can be persistently generated even under unfavorable environmental conditions. The physical mechanism is modeled after the idea of conformational changes, and it relies on the interplay of classical oscillations of large structures with the quantum dynamics of a few interacting degrees of freedom. In a similar context, we show that the transfer of an excitation through a linear chain of sites can be enhanced when the inter-site distances oscillate periodically. This enhancement is present even in comparison with the static con figuration which is optimal in the classical case and, therefore, it constitutes a clear signature of the underlying quantum dynamics. In Part II of this thesis, we study the radical pair mechanism from the perspective of quantum control and

  20. Color encoding in biologically-inspired convolutional neural networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rafegas, Ivet; Vanrell, Maria

    2018-05-11

    Convolutional Neural Networks have been proposed as suitable frameworks to model biological vision. Some of these artificial networks showed representational properties that rival primate performances in object recognition. In this paper we explore how color is encoded in a trained artificial network. It is performed by estimating a color selectivity index for each neuron, which allows us to describe the neuron activity to a color input stimuli. The index allows us to classify whether they are color selective or not and if they are of a single or double color. We have determined that all five convolutional layers of the network have a large number of color selective neurons. Color opponency clearly emerges in the first layer, presenting 4 main axes (Black-White, Red-Cyan, Blue-Yellow and Magenta-Green), but this is reduced and rotated as we go deeper into the network. In layer 2 we find a denser hue sampling of color neurons and opponency is reduced almost to one new main axis, the Bluish-Orangish coinciding with the dataset bias. In layers 3, 4 and 5 color neurons are similar amongst themselves, presenting different type of neurons that detect specific colored objects (e.g., orangish faces), specific surrounds (e.g., blue sky) or specific colored or contrasted object-surround configurations (e.g. blue blob in a green surround). Overall, our work concludes that color and shape representation are successively entangled through all the layers of the studied network, revealing certain parallelisms with the reported evidences in primate brains that can provide useful insight into intermediate hierarchical spatio-chromatic representations. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Light-driven robotics for nanoscopy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Glückstad, Jesper; Palima, Darwin

    2013-01-01

    The science fiction inspired shrinking of macro-scale robotic manipulation and handling down to the micro- and nanoscale regime opens new doors for exploiting the forces and torques of light for micro- and nanoscopic probing, actuation and control. Advancing light-driven micro-robotics requires...... and matter for robotically probing at the smallest biological length scales....

  2. An Infant Development-inspired Approach to Robot Hand-eye Coordination

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fei Chao

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a novel developmental learning approach for hand-eye coordination in an autonomous robotic system. Robotic hand-eye coordination plays an important role in dealing with real-time environments. Under the approach, infant developmental patterns are introduced to build our robot's learning system. The method works by first constructing a brain-like computational structure to control the robot, and then by using infant behavioural patterns to build a hand-eye coordination learning algorithm. This work is supported by an experimental evaluation, which shows that the control system is implemented simply, and that the learning approach provides fast and incremental learning of behavioural competence.

  3. Human-Inspired Eigenmovement Concept Provides Coupling-Free Sensorimotor Control in Humanoid Robot

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Alexandrov, A.V.; Lippi, V.; Mergner, T.; Frolov, A. A.; Hettich, G.; Húsek, Dušan

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 11, 25 April (2017), č. článku 22. ISSN 1662-5188 Institutional support: RVO:67985807 Keywords : human sensorimotor system * neuromechanics * biorobotics * motor control * eigenmovements Subject RIV: JD - Computer Applications, Robotics OBOR OECD: Robotics and automatic control Impact factor: 1.821, year: 2016

  4. Bio-inspired motion planning algorithms for autonomous robots facilitating greater plasticity for security applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Yi; Hohil, Myron; Desai, Sachi V.

    2007-10-01

    Proposed are techniques toward using collaborative robots for infrastructure security applications by utilizing them for mobile sensor suites. A vast number of critical facilities/technologies must be protected against unauthorized intruders. Employing a team of mobile robots working cooperatively can alleviate valuable human resources. Addressed are the technical challenges for multi-robot teams in security applications and the implementation of multi-robot motion planning algorithm based on the patrolling and threat response scenario. A neural network based methodology is exploited to plan a patrolling path with complete coverage. Also described is a proof-of-principle experimental setup with a group of Pioneer 3-AT and Centibot robots. A block diagram of the system integration of sensing and planning will illustrate the robot to robot interaction to operate as a collaborative unit. The proposed approach singular goal is to overcome the limits of previous approaches of robots in security applications and enabling systems to be deployed for autonomous operation in an unaltered environment providing access to an all encompassing sensor suite.

  5. Basic science through engineering? Synthetic modeling and the idea of biology-inspired engineering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knuuttila, Tarja; Loettgers, Andrea

    2013-06-01

    Synthetic biology is often understood in terms of the pursuit for well-characterized biological parts to create synthetic wholes. Accordingly, it has typically been conceived of as an engineering dominated and application oriented field. We argue that the relationship of synthetic biology to engineering is far more nuanced than that and involves a sophisticated epistemic dimension, as shown by the recent practice of synthetic modeling. Synthetic models are engineered genetic networks that are implanted in a natural cell environment. Their construction is typically combined with experiments on model organisms as well as mathematical modeling and simulation. What is especially interesting about this combinational modeling practice is that, apart from greater integration between these different epistemic activities, it has also led to the questioning of some central assumptions and notions on which synthetic biology is based. As a result synthetic biology is in the process of becoming more "biology inspired." Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. A Novel Robot System Integrating Biological and Mechanical Intelligence Based on Dissociated Neural Network-Controlled Closed-Loop Environment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yongcheng Li

    Full Text Available We propose the architecture of a novel robot system merging biological and artificial intelligence based on a neural controller connected to an external agent. We initially built a framework that connected the dissociated neural network to a mobile robot system to implement a realistic vehicle. The mobile robot system characterized by a camera and two-wheeled robot was designed to execute the target-searching task. We modified a software architecture and developed a home-made stimulation generator to build a bi-directional connection between the biological and the artificial components via simple binomial coding/decoding schemes. In this paper, we utilized a specific hierarchical dissociated neural network for the first time as the neural controller. Based on our work, neural cultures were successfully employed to control an artificial agent resulting in high performance. Surprisingly, under the tetanus stimulus training, the robot performed better and better with the increasement of training cycle because of the short-term plasticity of neural network (a kind of reinforced learning. Comparing to the work previously reported, we adopted an effective experimental proposal (i.e. increasing the training cycle to make sure of the occurrence of the short-term plasticity, and preliminarily demonstrated that the improvement of the robot's performance could be caused independently by the plasticity development of dissociated neural network. This new framework may provide some possible solutions for the learning abilities of intelligent robots by the engineering application of the plasticity processing of neural networks, also for the development of theoretical inspiration for the next generation neuro-prostheses on the basis of the bi-directional exchange of information within the hierarchical neural networks.

  7. A Novel Robot System Integrating Biological and Mechanical Intelligence Based on Dissociated Neural Network-Controlled Closed-Loop Environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yongcheng; Sun, Rong; Wang, Yuechao; Li, Hongyi; Zheng, Xiongfei

    2016-01-01

    We propose the architecture of a novel robot system merging biological and artificial intelligence based on a neural controller connected to an external agent. We initially built a framework that connected the dissociated neural network to a mobile robot system to implement a realistic vehicle. The mobile robot system characterized by a camera and two-wheeled robot was designed to execute the target-searching task. We modified a software architecture and developed a home-made stimulation generator to build a bi-directional connection between the biological and the artificial components via simple binomial coding/decoding schemes. In this paper, we utilized a specific hierarchical dissociated neural network for the first time as the neural controller. Based on our work, neural cultures were successfully employed to control an artificial agent resulting in high performance. Surprisingly, under the tetanus stimulus training, the robot performed better and better with the increasement of training cycle because of the short-term plasticity of neural network (a kind of reinforced learning). Comparing to the work previously reported, we adopted an effective experimental proposal (i.e. increasing the training cycle) to make sure of the occurrence of the short-term plasticity, and preliminarily demonstrated that the improvement of the robot's performance could be caused independently by the plasticity development of dissociated neural network. This new framework may provide some possible solutions for the learning abilities of intelligent robots by the engineering application of the plasticity processing of neural networks, also for the development of theoretical inspiration for the next generation neuro-prostheses on the basis of the bi-directional exchange of information within the hierarchical neural networks.

  8. Dynamic Modelling for Planar Extensible Continuum Robot Manipulators

    Science.gov (United States)

    2006-01-01

    to the OCTARM continuum ma- nipulator. The OCTARM manipulator is a biologically inspired soft robot manipulator resembling an elephant trunk or an... octopus arm [18]. The OCTARM, shown in Figure 1, is a three-section robot with nine degrees of freedom. Aside from two axis bending with constant...increasing interest in designing �biologically inspired � continuum robots . Some of these designs are mimicking trunks [8], [25], tentacles [17], [21], [24

  9. Engineering Gecko-Inspired Adhesives for Robotic Mobility and Manipulation in Microgravity

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The goal of the proposed research is to customize gecko-inspired adhesive technologies for space applications in manipulation and mobility, primarily addressing...

  10. An efficient soil penetration strategy for explorative robots inspired by plant root circumnutation movements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Del Dottore, Emanuela; Mondini, Alessio; Sadeghi, Ali; Mattoli, Virgilio; Mazzolai, Barbara

    2017-11-10

    This paper presents a comparative analysis in terms of energy required by an artificial probe to penetrate soil implementing two different strategies: a straight penetration movement; and a circumnutation, which is a peculiar root movement in plants. The role of circumnutations in plant roots is still reason of debate. We hypothesized that circumnutation movements can help roots in penetrating soil and we validated our assumption testing the probe at three distinct soil densities and using various combinations of circumnutation amplitude and period for each soil. The comparison was based on the total work done by the system while circumnutating at its tip level respect that showed by the same system in straight penetration. The total energy evaluation confirmed an improvement obtained by circumnutations up to 33%. We also proposed a fitting model for our experimental data that was used to estimate energy needed by the probe to penetrate soil at different dimensions and circumnutation amplitudes. Results show the existence of a trade-off among penetration velocity, circumnutation period and amplitude towards an energy consumption optimization, expressed by the lead angle of the helical path that should stay in the range between 46° and 65°. Moreover, circumnutations with appropriate amplitude (~10°) and period (~80 s) values are more efficient than straight penetration also at different probe tip dimensions up to a threshold diameter (from 2 mm to 55 mm). Based on the obtained results, we speculated that circumnutations can represent a strategy used by plant roots to reduce pressure and energy needed to penetrate soil. In perspective, the translation of this biological feature in robotic systems will allow improving their energetic efficiency in digging capabilities and thus opening new scenarios of use in search and rescue, environmental monitoring and soil exploration. Creative Commons Attribution license.

  11. A neuro-inspired spike-based PID motor controller for multi-motor robots with low cost FPGAs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jimenez-Fernandez, Angel; Jimenez-Moreno, Gabriel; Linares-Barranco, Alejandro; Dominguez-Morales, Manuel J; Paz-Vicente, Rafael; Civit-Balcells, Anton

    2012-01-01

    In this paper we present a neuro-inspired spike-based close-loop controller written in VHDL and implemented for FPGAs. This controller has been focused on controlling a DC motor speed, but only using spikes for information representation, processing and DC motor driving. It could be applied to other motors with proper driver adaptation. This controller architecture represents one of the latest layers in a Spiking Neural Network (SNN), which implements a bridge between robotics actuators and spike-based processing layers and sensors. The presented control system fuses actuation and sensors information as spikes streams, processing these spikes in hard real-time, implementing a massively parallel information processing system, through specialized spike-based circuits. This spike-based close-loop controller has been implemented into an AER platform, designed in our labs, that allows direct control of DC motors: the AER-Robot. Experimental results evidence the viability of the implementation of spike-based controllers, and hardware synthesis denotes low hardware requirements that allow replicating this controller in a high number of parallel controllers working together to allow a real-time robot control.

  12. A Neuro-Inspired Spike-Based PID Motor Controller for Multi-Motor Robots with Low Cost FPGAs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anton Civit-Balcells

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we present a neuro-inspired spike-based close-loop controller written in VHDL and implemented for FPGAs. This controller has been focused on controlling a DC motor speed, but only using spikes for information representation, processing and DC motor driving. It could be applied to other motors with proper driver adaptation. This controller architecture represents one of the latest layers in a Spiking Neural Network (SNN, which implements a bridge between robotics actuators and spike-based processing layers and sensors. The presented control system fuses actuation and sensors information as spikes streams, processing these spikes in hard real-time, implementing a massively parallel information processing system, through specialized spike-based circuits. This spike-based close-loop controller has been implemented into an AER platform, designed in our labs, that allows direct control of DC motors: the AER-Robot. Experimental results evidence the viability of the implementation of spike-based controllers, and hardware synthesis denotes low hardware requirements that allow replicating this controller in a high number of parallel controllers working together to allow a real-time robot control.

  13. Gecko inspired adhesives for enhanced dexterity of robotic manipulation systems, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Valuable time is spent by astronauts performing simple, mundane, or ergonomically taxing tasks. Therefore, one center of focus for NASA is to have robots...

  14. Comparing novelty of designs from biological-inspiration with those from brainstorming

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Keshwani, Sonal; Lenau, Torben Anker; Ahmed-Kristensen, Saeema

    2017-01-01

    This research aims to understand the significance of biological-analogies in fostering novelty by comparing biological-analogies with other design methods for idea generation. Among other design methods, brainstorming was chosen here as benchmark. Four studies were conducted to compare: (i......) the levels of abstraction at which concepts were ideated using biological inspiration (represented using biocards) with that using traditional brainstorming; and (ii) the novelty of concepts produced by using these two design methods. Concepts produced in these studies were evaluated for levels...... of abstraction at which they were ideated, average novelty, and proportion of high-novelty concepts. Results suggest that concepts generated using biocards were ideated at higher abstraction levels than those using brainstorming, but neither were at the highest abstraction levels. The average novelty of concepts...

  15. Righting and turning in mid-air using appendage inertia: reptile tails, analytical models and bio-inspired robots

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jusufi, A; Full, R J; Kawano, D T; Libby, T

    2010-01-01

    Unlike the falling cat, lizards can right themselves in mid-air by a swing of their large tails in one direction causing the body to rotate in the other. Here, we developed a new three-dimensional analytical model to investigate the effectiveness of tails as inertial appendages that change body orientation. We anchored our model using the morphological parameters of the flat-tailed house gecko Hemidactylus platyurus. The degree of roll in air righting and the amount of yaw in mid-air turning directly measured in house geckos matched the model's results. Our model predicted an increase in body roll and turning as tails increase in length relative to the body. Tails that swung from a near orthogonal plane relative to the body (i.e. 0-30 0 from vertical) were the most effective at generating body roll, whereas tails operating at steeper angles (i.e. 45-60 0 ) produced only half the rotation. To further test our analytical model's predictions, we built a bio-inspired robot prototype. The robot reinforced how effective attitude control can be attained with simple movements of an inertial appendage.

  16. Righting and turning in mid-air using appendage inertia: reptile tails, analytical models and bio-inspired robots

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jusufi, A; Full, R J [Department of Integrative Biology, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-3140 (United States); Kawano, D T [Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-1740 (United States); Libby, T, E-mail: ardianj@berkeley.ed [Center for Interdisciplinary Bio-inspiration in Education and Research, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-3140 (United States)

    2010-12-15

    Unlike the falling cat, lizards can right themselves in mid-air by a swing of their large tails in one direction causing the body to rotate in the other. Here, we developed a new three-dimensional analytical model to investigate the effectiveness of tails as inertial appendages that change body orientation. We anchored our model using the morphological parameters of the flat-tailed house gecko Hemidactylus platyurus. The degree of roll in air righting and the amount of yaw in mid-air turning directly measured in house geckos matched the model's results. Our model predicted an increase in body roll and turning as tails increase in length relative to the body. Tails that swung from a near orthogonal plane relative to the body (i.e. 0-30{sup 0} from vertical) were the most effective at generating body roll, whereas tails operating at steeper angles (i.e. 45-60{sup 0}) produced only half the rotation. To further test our analytical model's predictions, we built a bio-inspired robot prototype. The robot reinforced how effective attitude control can be attained with simple movements of an inertial appendage.

  17. Biologically-inspired On-chip Learning in Pulsed Neural Networks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lehmann, Torsten; Woodburn, Robin

    1999-01-01

    Self-learning chips to implement many popular ANN (artificial neural network) algorithms are very difficult to design. We explain why this is so and say what lessons previous work teaches us in the design of self-learning systems. We offer a contribution to the "biologically-inspired" approach......, explaining what we mean by this term and providing an example of a robust, self-learning design that can solve simple classical-conditioning tasks, We give details of the design of individual circuits to perform component functions, which can then be combined into a network to solve the task. We argue...

  18. Bio-Inspired Genetic Algorithms with Formalized Crossover Operators for Robotic Applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Jie; Kang, Man; Li, Xiaojuan; Liu, Geng-Yang

    2017-01-01

    Genetic algorithms are widely adopted to solve optimization problems in robotic applications. In such safety-critical systems, it is vitally important to formally prove the correctness when genetic algorithms are applied. This paper focuses on formal modeling of crossover operations that are one of most important operations in genetic algorithms. Specially, we for the first time formalize crossover operations with higher-order logic based on HOL4 that is easy to be deployed with its user-friendly programing environment. With correctness-guaranteed formalized crossover operations, we can safely apply them in robotic applications. We implement our technique to solve a path planning problem using a genetic algorithm with our formalized crossover operations, and the results show the effectiveness of our technique.

  19. Bio-inspired flexible joints with passive feathering for robotic fish pectoral fins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Behbahani, Sanaz Bazaz; Tan, Xiaobo

    2016-05-04

    In this paper a novel flexible joint is proposed for robotic fish pectoral fins, which enables a swimming behavior emulating the fin motions of many aquatic animals. In particular, the pectoral fin operates primarily in the rowing mode, while undergoing passive feathering during the recovery stroke to reduce hydrodynamic drag on the fin. The latter enables effective locomotion even with symmetric base actuation during power and recovery strokes. A dynamic model is developed to facilitate the understanding and design of the joint, where blade element theory is used to calculate the hydrodynamic forces on the pectoral fins, and the joint is modeled as a paired torsion spring and damper. Experimental results on a robotic fish prototype are presented to illustrate the effectiveness of the joint mechanism, validate the proposed model, and indicate the utility of the proposed model for the optimal design of joint depth and stiffness in achieving the trade-off between swimming speed and mechanical efficiency.

  20. Improved Lighthill fish swimming model for bio-inspired robots - Modelling, computational aspects and experimental comparisons.

    OpenAIRE

    Porez , Mathieu; Boyer , Frédéric; Ijspeert , Auke

    2014-01-01

    International audience; The best known analytical model of swimming was originally developed by Lighthill and is known as large amplitude elongated body theory (LAEBT). Recently, this theory has been improved and adapted to robotics through a series of studies [Boyer et al., 2008, 2010; Candelier et al., 2011] ranging from hydrodynamic modelling to mobile multibody system dynamics. This article marks a further step towards the Lighthill theory. The LAEBT is ap- plied to one of the best bio-in...

  1. Which activities threaten independent living of elderly when becoming problematic: inspiration for meaningful service robot functionality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bedaf, Sandra; Gelderblom, Gert Jan; Syrdal, Dag Sverre; Lehmann, Hagen; Michel, Hervé; Hewson, David; Amirabdollahian, Farshid; Dautenhahn, Kerstin; de Witte, Luc

    2014-11-01

    In light of the increasing elderly population and the growing demand for home care, the potential of robot support is given increasing attention. In this paper, an inventory of activities was made that threaten independent living of elderly when becoming problematic. Results will guide the further development of an existing service robot, the Care-O-bot®. A systematic literature search of PubMed was performed, focused on the risk factors for institutionalization. Additionally, focus group sessions were conducted in the Netherlands, United Kingdom and France. In these focus group sessions, problematic activities threatening the independence of elderly people were discussed. Three separate target groups were included in the focus group sessions: (1) elderly persons (n = 41), (2) formal caregivers (n = 40) and (3) informal caregivers (n = 32). Activities within the International Classification of Functioning domains mobility, self-care, and interpersonal interaction and relationships were found to be the most problematic. A distinct set of daily activities was identified that may threaten independent living, but no single activity could be selected as the main activity causing a loss of independence as it is often a combination of problematic activities that is person-specific. Supporting the problematic activities need not involve a robotic solution.

  2. Biology and Architecture: Two Buildings Inspired by the Anatomy of the Visual System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maro Kiris, Irem

    2018-05-04

    Architectural production has been influenced by a variety of sources. Forms derived from nature, biology and live organisms, had often been utilised in art and architecture. Certain features of the human anatomy had been reflected in design process in various ways, as imitations, abstractions, interpretations of the reality. The correlation of ideal proportions had been investigated throughout centuries. Scholars, art historians starting with Vitruvius from the world of ancient Roman architecture, described the human figure as being the principal source of proportion among the classical orders of architecture. This study aims to investigate two contemporary buildings, namely Kiasma Museum in Helsinki and Eye Museum in Amsterdam, inspired directly from the anatomy of visual system. Morover the author discussed the relationship of biology and architecture through these two special buildings by viewing the eye and chiasma as metaphors for elements of architecture.

  3. Swimming performance of a bio-inspired robotic vessel with undulating fin propulsion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Hanlin; Curet, Oscar M

    2018-06-18

    Undulatory fin propulsion exhibits high degree of maneuver control -- an ideal for underwater vessels exploring complex environments. In this work, we developed and tested a self-contained, free-swimming robot with a single undulating fin running along the length of the robot, which controls both forward motion and directional maneuvers. We successfully replicated several maneuvers including forward swimming, reversed motion, diving, station-keeping and vertical swimming. For each maneuver, a series of experiments were performed as a function of fin frequency, wavelength and traveling wave direction to measure swimming velocities, orientation angles and mean power consumption. In addition, three-dimensional flow fields were measured during forward swimming and station-keeping using volumetric particle image velocimetry (PIV). The efficiency for forward swimming was compared using three metrics: cost of transport, wave efficiency and Strouhal number. The results indicate that the cost of transport exhibits a V-shape trend with the minimum value at low swimming velocity. The robot can reach optimal wave efficiency and locomotor performance at a range of 0.2 to 0.4 St. Volumetric PIV data reveal the shed of vortex tubes generated by the fin during forward swimming and station keeping. For forward swimming, a series of vortex tubes are shed off the fin edge with a lateral and downward direction with respect to the longitudinal axis of the fin. For station keeping, flow measurements suggest that the vortex tubes are shed at the mid-section of the fin while the posterior and anterior segment of the vortex stay attached to the fin. These results agree with the previous vortex structures based on simulations and 2D PIV. The further development of this vessel with high maneuverability and station keeping performance can be used for oceanography, coastal exploration, defense, oil industry and other marine industries where operations are unsafe or impractical for divers or

  4. Biological Immune System Applications on Mobile Robot for Disabled People

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Songmin Jia

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available To improve the service quality of service robots for the disabled, immune system is applied on robot for its advantages such as diversity, dynamic, parallel management, self-organization, and self-adaptation. According to the immune system theory, local environment condition sensed by robot is considered an antigen while robot is regarded as B-cell and possible node as antibody, respectively. Antibody-antigen affinity is employed to choose the optimal possible node to ensure the service robot can pass through the optimal path. The paper details the immune system applications on service robot and gives experimental results.

  5. Cerebellar-inspired adaptive control of a robot eye actuated by pneumatic artificial muscles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenz, Alexander; Anderson, Sean R; Pipe, A G; Melhuish, Chris; Dean, Paul; Porrill, John

    2009-12-01

    In this paper, a model of cerebellar function is implemented and evaluated in the control of a robot eye actuated by pneumatic artificial muscles. The investigated control problem is stabilization of the visual image in response to disturbances. This is analogous to the vestibuloocular reflex (VOR) in humans. The cerebellar model is structurally based on the adaptive filter, and the learning rule is computationally analogous to least-mean squares, where parameter adaptation at the parallel fiber/Purkinje cell synapse is driven by the correlation of the sensory error signal (carried by the climbing fiber) and the motor command signal. Convergence of the algorithm is first analyzed in simulation on a model of the robot and then tested online in both one and two degrees of freedom. The results show that this model of neural function successfully works on a real-world problem, providing empirical evidence for validating: 1) the generic cerebellar learning algorithm; 2) the function of the cerebellum in the VOR; and 3) the signal transmission between functional neural components of the VOR.

  6. NASA, Engineering, and Swarming Robots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leucht, Kurt

    2015-01-01

    This presentation is an introduction to NASA, to science and engineering, to biologically inspired robotics, and to the Swarmie ant-inspired robot project at KSC. This presentation is geared towards elementary school students, middle school students, and also high school students. This presentation is suitable for use in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) outreach events. The first use of this presentation will be on Oct 28, 2015 at Madison Middle School in Titusville, Florida where the author has been asked by the NASA-KSC Speakers Bureau to speak to the students about the Swarmie robots.

  7. Extension versus Bending for Continuum Robots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    George Grimes

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we analyze the capabilities of a novel class of continuous-backbone ("continuum" robots. These robots are inspired by biological "trunks, and tentacles". However, the capabilities of established continuum robot designs, which feature controlled bending but not extension, fall short of those of their biological counterparts. In this paper, we argue that the addition of controlled extension provides dual and complementary functionality, and correspondingly enhanced performance, in continuum robots. We present an interval-based analysis to show how the inclusion of controllable extension significantly enhances the workspace and capabilities of continuum robots.

  8. Seeding-inspired chemotaxis genetic algorithm for the inference of biological systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Shinq-Jen; Wu, Cheng-Tao

    2014-09-18

    A large challenge in the post-genomic era is to obtain the quantitatively dynamic interactive information of the important constitutes of underlying systems. The S-system is a dynamic and structurally rich model that determines the net strength of interactions between genes and/or proteins. Good generation characteristics without the need for prior information have allowed S-systems to become one of the most promising canonical models. Various evolutionary computation technologies have recently been developed for the identification of system parameters and skeletal-network structures. However, the gaps between the truncated and preserved terms remain too small. Additionally, current research methods fail to identify the structures of high dimensional systems (e.g., 30 genes with 1800 connections). Optimization technologies should converge fast and have the ability to adaptively adjust the search. In this study, we propose a seeding-inspired chemotaxis genetic algorithm (SCGA) that can force evolution to adjust the population movement to identify a favorable location. The seeding-inspired training strategy is a method to achieve optimal results with limited resources. SCGA introduces seeding-inspired genetic operations to allow a population to possess competitive power (exploitation and exploration) and a winner-chemotaxis-induced population migration to force a population to repeatedly tumble away from an attractor and swim toward another attractor. SCGA was tested on several canonical biological systems. SCGA not only learned the correct structure within only one to three pruning steps but also ensures pruning safety. The values of the truncated terms were all smaller than 10 -14 , even for a thirty-gene system. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Thermo-fluidic devices and materials inspired from mass and energy transport phenomena in biological system

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jian XIAO; Jing LIU

    2009-01-01

    Mass and energy transport consists of one of the most significant physiological processes in nature, which guarantees many amazing biological phenomena and activ-ities. Borrowing such idea, many state-of-the-art thermo-fluidic devices and materials such as artificial kidneys, carrier erythrocyte, blood substitutes and so on have been successfully invented. Besides, new emerging technologies are still being developed. This paper is dedicated to present-ing a relatively complete review of the typical devices and materials in clinical use inspired by biological mass and energy transport mechanisms. Particularly, these artificial thermo-fluidic devices and materials will be categorized into organ transplantation, drug delivery, nutrient transport, micro operation, and power supply. Potential approaches for innovating conventional technologies were discussed, corresponding biological phenomena and physical mechan-isms were interpreted, future promising mass-and-energy-transport-based bionic devices were suggested, and prospects along this direction were pointed out. It is expected that many artificial devices based on biological mass and energy transport principle will appear to better improve vari-ous fields related to human life in the near future.

  10. Biologically inspired control and modeling of (biorobotic systems and some applications of fractional calculus in mechanics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lazarević Mihailo P.

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, the applications of biologically inspired modeling and control of (biomechanical (nonredundant mechanisms are presented, as well as newly obtained results of author in mechanics which are based on using fractional calculus. First, it is proposed to use biological analog-synergy due to existence of invariant features in the execution of functional motion. Second, the model of (biomechanical system may be obtained using another biological concept called distributed positioning (DP, which is based on the inertial properties and actuation of joints of considered mechanical system. In addition, it is proposed to use other biological principles such as: principle of minimum interaction, which takes a main role in hierarchical structure of control and self-adjusting principle (introduce local positive/negative feedback on control with great amplifying, which allows efficiently realization of control based on iterative natural learning. Also, new, recently obtained results of the author in the fields of stability, electroviscoelasticity, and control theory are presented which are based on using fractional calculus (FC. [Projekat Ministarstva nauke Republike Srbije, br. 35006

  11. Multimodal communication in animals, humans and robots: an introduction to perspectives in brain-inspired informatics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wermter, S; Page, M; Knowles, M; Gallese, V; Pulvermüller, F; Taylor, J

    2009-03-01

    Recent years have seen convergence in research on brain mechanisms and neurocomputational approaches, culminating in the creation of a new generation of robots whose artificial "brains" respect neuroscience principles and whose "cognitive" systems venture into higher cognitive domains such as planning and action sequencing, complex object and concept processing, and language. The present article gives an overview of selected projects in this general multidisciplinary field. The work reviewed centres on research funded by the EU in the context of the New and Emergent Science and Technology, NEST, funding scheme highlighting the topic "What it means to be human". Examples of such projects include learning by imitation (Edici project), examining the origin of human rule-based reasoning (Far), studying the neural origins of language (Neurocom), exploring the evolutionary origins of the human mind (Pkb140404), researching into verbal and non-verbal communication (Refcom), using and interpreting signs (Sedsu), characterising human language by structural complexity (Chlasc), and representing abstract concepts (Abstract). Each of the communication-centred research projects revealed individual insights; however, there had been little overall analysis of results and hypotheses. In the Specific Support Action Nestcom, we proposed to analyse some NEST projects focusing on the central question "What it means to communicate" and to review, understand and integrate the results of previous communication-related research, in order to develop and communicate multimodal experimental hypotheses for investigation by future projects. The present special issue includes a range of papers on the interplay between neuroinformatics, brain science and robotics in the general area of higher cognitive functions and multimodal communication. These papers extend talks given at the NESTCOM workshops, at ICANN (http://www.his.sunderland.ac.uk/nestcom/workshop/icann.html) in Porto and at the first

  12. A new landing impact attenuation seat in manned spacecraft biologically-inspired by felids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu Hui

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available When manned spacecraft comes back to the earth, it relies on the impact attenuation seat to protect astronauts from injuries during landing phase. Hence, the seat needs to transfer impact load, as small as possible, to the crew. However, there is little room left for traditional seat to improve further. Herein, a new seat system biologically-inspired by felids’ landing is proposed. Firstly, a series of experiments was carried out on cats and tigers, in which they were trained to jump down voluntarily from different heights. Based on the ground reaction forces combined with kinematics, the experiment indicated that felids’ landing after self-initial jump was a multi-step impact attenuation process and the new seat was inspired by this. Then the construction and work process of new seat were redesigned to realize the multi-step impact attenuation. The dynamic response of traditional and new seat is analyzed under the identical conditions and the results show that the new concept seat can significantly weaken the occupant overload in two directions compared with that of traditional seat. As a consequence, the risk of injury evaluated for spinal and head is also lowered, meaning a higher level of protection which is especially beneficial to the debilitated astronaut.

  13. Maneuvering control and configuration adaptation of a biologically inspired morphing aircraft

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdulrahim, Mujahid

    Natural flight as a source of inspiration for aircraft design was prominent with early aircraft but became marginalized as aircraft became larger and faster. With recent interest in small unmanned air vehicles, biological inspiration is a possible technology to enhance mission performance of aircraft that are dimensionally similar to gliding birds. Serial wing joints, loosely modeling the avian skeletal structure, are used in the current study to allow significant reconfiguration of the wing shape. The wings are reconfigured to optimize aerodynamic performance and maneuvering metrics related to specific mission tasks. Wing shapes for each mission are determined and related to the seagulls, falcons, albatrosses, and non-migratory African swallows on which the aircraft are based. Variable wing geometry changes the vehicle dynamics, affording versatility in flight behavior but also requiring appropriate compensation to maintain stability and controllability. Time-varying compensation is in the form of a baseline controller which adapts to both the variable vehicle dynamics and to the changing mission requirements. Wing shape is adapted in flight to minimize a cost function which represents energy, temporal, and spatial efficiency. An optimal control architecture unifies the control and adaptation tasks.

  14. Actions, Observations, and Decision-Making: Biologically Inspired Strategies for Autonomous Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pisanich, Greg; Ippolito, Corey; Plice, Laura; Young, Larry A.; Lau, Benton

    2003-01-01

    This paper details the development and demonstration of an autonomous aerial vehicle embodying search and find mission planning and execution srrategies inspired by foraging behaviors found in biology. It begins by describing key characteristics required by an aeria! explorer to support science and planetary exploration goals, and illustrates these through a hypothetical mission profile. It next outlines a conceptual bio- inspired search and find autonomy architecture that implements observations, decisions, and actions through an "ecology" of producer, consumer, and decomposer agents. Moving from concepts to development activities, it then presents the results of mission representative UAV aerial surveys at a Mars analog site. It next describes hardware and software enhancements made to a commercial small fixed-wing UAV system, which inc!nde a ncw dpvelopnent architecture that also provides hardware in the loop simulation capability. After presenting the results of simulated and actual flights of bioinspired flight algorithms, it concludes with a discussion of future development to include an expansion of system capabilities and field science support.

  15. Propulsion of swimming microrobots inspired by metachronal waves in ciliates: from biology to material specifications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Palagi, Stefano; Mazzolai, Barbara; Beccai, Lucia; Jager, Edwin WH

    2013-01-01

    The quest for swimming microrobots originates from possible applications in medicine, especially involving navigation in bodily fluids. Swimming microorganisms have become a source of inspiration because their propulsion mechanisms are effective in the low-Reynolds number regime. In this study, we address a propulsion mechanism inspired by metachronal waves, i.e. the spontaneous coordination of cilia leading to the fast swimming of ciliates. We analyse the biological mechanism (referring to its particular embodiment in Paramecium caudatum), and we investigate the contribution of its main features to the swimming performance, through a three-dimensional finite-elements model, in order to develop a simplified, yet effective artificial design. We propose a bioinspired propulsion mechanism for a swimming microrobot based on a continuous cylindrical electroactive surface exhibiting perpendicular wave deformations travelling longitudinally along its main axis. The simplified propulsion mechanism is conceived specifically for microrobots that embed a micro-actuation system capable of executing the bioinspired propulsion (self-propelled microrobots). Among the available electroactive polymers, we select polypyrrole as the possible actuation material and we assess it for this particular embodiment. The results are used to appoint target performance specifications for the development of improved or new electroactive materials to attain metachronal-waves-like propulsion. (paper)

  16. Propulsion of swimming microrobots inspired by metachronal waves in ciliates: from biology to material specifications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palagi, Stefano; Jager, Edwin W H; Mazzolai, Barbara; Beccai, Lucia

    2013-12-01

    The quest for swimming microrobots originates from possible applications in medicine, especially involving navigation in bodily fluids. Swimming microorganisms have become a source of inspiration because their propulsion mechanisms are effective in the low-Reynolds number regime. In this study, we address a propulsion mechanism inspired by metachronal waves, i.e. the spontaneous coordination of cilia leading to the fast swimming of ciliates. We analyse the biological mechanism (referring to its particular embodiment in Paramecium caudatum), and we investigate the contribution of its main features to the swimming performance, through a three-dimensional finite-elements model, in order to develop a simplified, yet effective artificial design. We propose a bioinspired propulsion mechanism for a swimming microrobot based on a continuous cylindrical electroactive surface exhibiting perpendicular wave deformations travelling longitudinally along its main axis. The simplified propulsion mechanism is conceived specifically for microrobots that embed a micro-actuation system capable of executing the bioinspired propulsion (self-propelled microrobots). Among the available electroactive polymers, we select polypyrrole as the possible actuation material and we assess it for this particular embodiment. The results are used to appoint target performance specifications for the development of improved or new electroactive materials to attain metachronal-waves-like propulsion.

  17. (YIP 10) - Bio-Inspired Interfaces for Hybrid Structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-07-01

    vertebrate bones and teeth, mollusk shells and arthropod exoskeletons [1, 2]. Two interesting examples of such biological systems are gecko’s footpad...range from non-wetting painting and smart adhesives [35-41] to intricate bioinspired designs such as nano- and micro- robotics with climbing abilities...smart adhesion. Advanced Materials, 2008. 20(4): p. 711-716. 42. Wood, R.J., The first takeoff of a biologically inspired at-scale robotic insect

  18. Perceptron-like computation based on biologically-inspired neurons with heterosynaptic mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaluza, Pablo; Urdapilleta, Eugenio

    2014-10-01

    Perceptrons are one of the fundamental paradigms in artificial neural networks and a key processing scheme in supervised classification tasks. However, the algorithm they provide is given in terms of unrealistically simple processing units and connections and therefore, its implementation in real neural networks is hard to be fulfilled. In this work, we present a neural circuit able to perform perceptron's computation based on realistic models of neurons and synapses. The model uses Wang-Buzsáki neurons with coupling provided by axodendritic and axoaxonic synapses (heterosynapsis). The main characteristics of the feedforward perceptron operation are conserved, which allows to combine both approaches: whereas the classical artificial system can be used to learn a particular problem, its solution can be directly implemented in this neural circuit. As a result, we propose a biologically-inspired system able to work appropriately in a wide range of frequencies and system parameters, while keeping robust to noise and error.

  19. Biologically-Inspired Concepts for Autonomic Self-Protection in Multiagent Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sterritt, Roy; Hinchey, Mike

    2006-01-01

    Biologically-inspired autonomous and autonomic systems (AAS) are essentially concerned with creating self-directed and self-managing systems based on metaphors &om nature and the human body, such as the autonomic nervous system. Agent technologies have been identified as a key enabler for engineering autonomy and autonomicity in systems, both in terms of retrofitting into legacy systems and in designing new systems. Handing over responsibility to systems themselves raises concerns for humans with regard to safety and security. This paper reports on the continued investigation into a strand of research on how to engineer self-protection mechanisms into systems to assist in encouraging confidence regarding security when utilizing autonomy and autonomicity. This includes utilizing the apoptosis and quiescence metaphors to potentially provide a self-destruct or self-sleep signal between autonomic agents when needed, and an ALice signal to facilitate self-identification and self-certification between anonymous autonomous agents and systems.

  20. Bio-inspired swing leg control for spring-mass robots running on ground with unexpected height disturbance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vejdani, H R; Hurst, J W; Blum, Y; Daley, M A

    2013-01-01

    We proposed three swing leg control policies for spring-mass running robots, inspired by experimental data from our recent collaborative work on ground running birds. Previous investigations suggest that animals may prioritize injury avoidance and/or efficiency as their objective function during running rather than maintaining limit-cycle stability. Therefore, in this study we targeted structural capacity (maximum leg force to avoid damage) and efficiency as the main goals for our control policies, since these objective functions are crucial to reduce motor size and structure weight. Each proposed policy controls the leg angle as a function of time during flight phase such that its objective function during the subsequent stance phase is regulated. The three objective functions that are regulated in the control policies are (i) the leg peak force, (ii) the axial impulse, and (iii) the leg actuator work. It should be noted that each control policy regulates one single objective function. Surprisingly, all three swing leg control policies result in nearly identical subsequent stance phase dynamics. This implies that the implementation of any of the proposed control policies would satisfy both goals (damage avoidance and efficiency) at once. Furthermore, all three control policies require a surprisingly simple leg angle adjustment: leg retraction with constant angular acceleration. (paper)

  1. Bio-inspired swing leg control for spring-mass robots running on ground with unexpected height disturbance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vejdani, H R; Blum, Y; Daley, M A; Hurst, J W

    2013-12-01

    We proposed three swing leg control policies for spring-mass running robots, inspired by experimental data from our recent collaborative work on ground running birds. Previous investigations suggest that animals may prioritize injury avoidance and/or efficiency as their objective function during running rather than maintaining limit-cycle stability. Therefore, in this study we targeted structural capacity (maximum leg force to avoid damage) and efficiency as the main goals for our control policies, since these objective functions are crucial to reduce motor size and structure weight. Each proposed policy controls the leg angle as a function of time during flight phase such that its objective function during the subsequent stance phase is regulated. The three objective functions that are regulated in the control policies are (i) the leg peak force, (ii) the axial impulse, and (iii) the leg actuator work. It should be noted that each control policy regulates one single objective function. Surprisingly, all three swing leg control policies result in nearly identical subsequent stance phase dynamics. This implies that the implementation of any of the proposed control policies would satisfy both goals (damage avoidance and efficiency) at once. Furthermore, all three control policies require a surprisingly simple leg angle adjustment: leg retraction with constant angular acceleration.

  2. Automated mitosis detection using texture, SIFT features and HMAX biologically inspired approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Irshad, Humayun; Jalali, Sepehr; Roux, Ludovic; Racoceanu, Daniel; Hwee, Lim Joo; Naour, Gilles Le; Capron, Frédérique

    2013-01-01

    According to Nottingham grading system, mitosis count in breast cancer histopathology is one of three components required for cancer grading and prognosis. Manual counting of mitosis is tedious and subject to considerable inter- and intra-reader variations. The aim is to investigate the various texture features and Hierarchical Model and X (HMAX) biologically inspired approach for mitosis detection using machine-learning techniques. We propose an approach that assists pathologists in automated mitosis detection and counting. The proposed method, which is based on the most favorable texture features combination, examines the separability between different channels of color space. Blue-ratio channel provides more discriminative information for mitosis detection in histopathological images. Co-occurrence features, run-length features, and Scale-invariant feature transform (SIFT) features were extracted and used in the classification of mitosis. Finally, a classification is performed to put the candidate patch either in the mitosis class or in the non-mitosis class. Three different classifiers have been evaluated: Decision tree, linear kernel Support Vector Machine (SVM), and non-linear kernel SVM. We also evaluate the performance of the proposed framework using the modified biologically inspired model of HMAX and compare the results with other feature extraction methods such as dense SIFT. The proposed method has been tested on Mitosis detection in breast cancer histological images (MITOS) dataset provided for an International Conference on Pattern Recognition (ICPR) 2012 contest. The proposed framework achieved 76% recall, 75% precision and 76% F-measure. Different frameworks for classification have been evaluated for mitosis detection. In future work, instead of regions, we intend to compute features on the results of mitosis contour segmentation and use them to improve detection and classification rate.

  3. Automated mitosis detection using texture, SIFT features and HMAX biologically inspired approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Humayun Irshad

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Context: According to Nottingham grading system, mitosis count in breast cancer histopathology is one of three components required for cancer grading and prognosis. Manual counting of mitosis is tedious and subject to considerable inter- and intra-reader variations. Aims: The aim is to investigate the various texture features and Hierarchical Model and X (HMAX biologically inspired approach for mitosis detection using machine-learning techniques. Materials and Methods: We propose an approach that assists pathologists in automated mitosis detection and counting. The proposed method, which is based on the most favorable texture features combination, examines the separability between different channels of color space. Blue-ratio channel provides more discriminative information for mitosis detection in histopathological images. Co-occurrence features, run-length features, and Scale-invariant feature transform (SIFT features were extracted and used in the classification of mitosis. Finally, a classification is performed to put the candidate patch either in the mitosis class or in the non-mitosis class. Three different classifiers have been evaluated: Decision tree, linear kernel Support Vector Machine (SVM, and non-linear kernel SVM. We also evaluate the performance of the proposed framework using the modified biologically inspired model of HMAX and compare the results with other feature extraction methods such as dense SIFT. Results: The proposed method has been tested on Mitosis detection in breast cancer histological images (MITOS dataset provided for an International Conference on Pattern Recognition (ICPR 2012 contest. The proposed framework achieved 76% recall, 75% precision and 76% F-measure. Conclusions: Different frameworks for classification have been evaluated for mitosis detection. In future work, instead of regions, we intend to compute features on the results of mitosis contour segmentation and use them to improve detection and

  4. Cortex Inspired Model for Inverse Kinematics Computation for a Humanoid Robotic Finger

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gentili, Rodolphe J.; Oh, Hyuk; Molina, Javier; Reggia, James A.; Contreras-Vidal, José L.

    2013-01-01

    In order to approach human hand performance levels, artificial anthropomorphic hands/fingers have increasingly incorporated human biomechanical features. However, the performance of finger reaching movements to visual targets involving the complex kinematics of multi-jointed, anthropomorphic actuators is a difficult problem. This is because the relationship between sensory and motor coordinates is highly nonlinear, and also often includes mechanical coupling of the two last joints. Recently, we developed a cortical model that learns the inverse kinematics of a simulated anthropomorphic finger. Here, we expand this previous work by assessing if this cortical model is able to learn the inverse kinematics for an actual anthropomorphic humanoid finger having its two last joints coupled and controlled by pneumatic muscles. The findings revealed that single 3D reaching movements, as well as more complex patterns of motion of the humanoid finger, were accurately and robustly performed by this cortical model while producing kinematics comparable to those of humans. This work contributes to the development of a bioinspired controller providing adaptive, robust and flexible control of dexterous robotic and prosthetic hands. PMID:23366569

  5. Robotics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popov, E. P.; Iurevich, E. I.

    The history and the current status of robotics are reviewed, as are the design, operation, and principal applications of industrial robots. Attention is given to programmable robots, robots with adaptive control and elements of artificial intelligence, and remotely controlled robots. The applications of robots discussed include mechanical engineering, cargo handling during transportation and storage, mining, and metallurgy. The future prospects of robotics are briefly outlined.

  6. Introducing memory and association mechanism into a biologically inspired visual model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qiao, Hong; Li, Yinlin; Tang, Tang; Wang, Peng

    2014-09-01

    A famous biologically inspired hierarchical model (HMAX model), which was proposed recently and corresponds to V1 to V4 of the ventral pathway in primate visual cortex, has been successfully applied to multiple visual recognition tasks. The model is able to achieve a set of position- and scale-tolerant recognition, which is a central problem in pattern recognition. In this paper, based on some other biological experimental evidence, we introduce the memory and association mechanism into the HMAX model. The main contributions of the work are: 1) mimicking the active memory and association mechanism and adding the top down adjustment to the HMAX model, which is the first try to add the active adjustment to this famous model and 2) from the perspective of information, algorithms based on the new model can reduce the computation storage and have a good recognition performance. The new model is also applied to object recognition processes. The primary experimental results show that our method is efficient with a much lower memory requirement.

  7. Biologically-inspired approaches for self-organization, adaptation, and collaboration of heterogeneous autonomous systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steinberg, Marc

    2011-06-01

    This paper presents a selective survey of theoretical and experimental progress in the development of biologicallyinspired approaches for complex surveillance and reconnaissance problems with multiple, heterogeneous autonomous systems. The focus is on approaches that may address ISR problems that can quickly become mathematically intractable or otherwise impractical to implement using traditional optimization techniques as the size and complexity of the problem is increased. These problems require dealing with complex spatiotemporal objectives and constraints at a variety of levels from motion planning to task allocation. There is also a need to ensure solutions are reliable and robust to uncertainty and communications limitations. First, the paper will provide a short introduction to the current state of relevant biological research as relates to collective animal behavior. Second, the paper will describe research on largely decentralized, reactive, or swarm approaches that have been inspired by biological phenomena such as schools of fish, flocks of birds, ant colonies, and insect swarms. Next, the paper will discuss approaches towards more complex organizational and cooperative mechanisms in team and coalition behaviors in order to provide mission coverage of large, complex areas. Relevant team behavior may be derived from recent advances in understanding of the social and cooperative behaviors used for collaboration by tens of animals with higher-level cognitive abilities such as mammals and birds. Finally, the paper will briefly discuss challenges involved in user interaction with these types of systems.

  8. Soft Robotic Grippers for Biological Sampling on Deep Reefs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galloway, Kevin C; Becker, Kaitlyn P; Phillips, Brennan; Kirby, Jordan; Licht, Stephen; Tchernov, Dan; Wood, Robert J; Gruber, David F

    2016-03-01

    This article presents the development of an underwater gripper that utilizes soft robotics technology to delicately manipulate and sample fragile species on the deep reef. Existing solutions for deep sea robotic manipulation have historically been driven by the oil industry, resulting in destructive interactions with undersea life. Soft material robotics relies on compliant materials that are inherently impedance matched to natural environments and to soft or fragile organisms. We demonstrate design principles for soft robot end effectors, bench-top characterization of their grasping performance, and conclude by describing in situ testing at mesophotic depths. The result is the first use of soft robotics in the deep sea for the nondestructive sampling of benthic fauna.

  9. Utilization and viability of biologically-inspired algorithms in a dynamic multiagent camera surveillance system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mundhenk, Terrell N.; Dhavale, Nitin; Marmol, Salvador; Calleja, Elizabeth; Navalpakkam, Vidhya; Bellman, Kirstie; Landauer, Chris; Arbib, Michael A.; Itti, Laurent

    2003-10-01

    computational resources. The system demonstrates the viability of biologically inspired systems in a real time tracking. In future work we plan on implementing additional biological mechanisms for cooperative management of both the sensor and processing resources in this system that include top down biasing for target specificity as well as novelty and the activity of the tracked object in relation to sensitive features of the environment.

  10. Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santello, Marco; Bianchi, Matteo; Gabiccini, Marco; Ricciardi, Emiliano; Salvietti, Gionata; Prattichizzo, Domenico; Ernst, Marc; Moscatelli, Alessandro; Jörntell, Henrik; Kappers, Astrid M. L.; Kyriakopoulos, Kostas; Albu-Schäffer, Alin; Castellini, Claudio; Bicchi, Antonio

    2016-07-01

    The term 'synergy' - from the Greek synergia - means 'working together'. The concept of multiple elements working together towards a common goal has been extensively used in neuroscience to develop theoretical frameworks, experimental approaches, and analytical techniques to understand neural control of movement, and for applications for neuro-rehabilitation. In the past decade, roboticists have successfully applied the framework of synergies to create novel design and control concepts for artificial hands, i.e., robotic hands and prostheses. At the same time, robotic research on the sensorimotor integration underlying the control and sensing of artificial hands has inspired new research approaches in neuroscience, and has provided useful instruments for novel experiments. The ambitious goal of integrating expertise and research approaches in robotics and neuroscience to study the properties and applications of the concept of synergies is generating a number of multidisciplinary cooperative projects, among which the recently finished 4-year European project ;The Hand Embodied; (THE). This paper reviews the main insights provided by this framework. Specifically, we provide an overview of neuroscientific bases of hand synergies and introduce how robotics has leveraged the insights from neuroscience for innovative design in hardware and controllers for biomedical engineering applications, including myoelectric hand prostheses, devices for haptics research, and wearable sensing of human hand kinematics. The review also emphasizes how this multidisciplinary collaboration has generated new ways to conceptualize a synergy-based approach for robotics, and provides guidelines and principles for analyzing human behavior and synthesizing artificial robotic systems based on a theory of synergies.

  11. A Synthetic-Biology-Inspired Therapeutic Strategy for Targeting and Treating Hepatogenous Diabetes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xue, Shuai; Yin, Jianli; Shao, Jiawei; Yu, Yuanhuan; Yang, Linfeng; Wang, Yidan; Xie, Mingqi; Fussenegger, Martin; Ye, Haifeng

    2017-02-01

    Hepatogenous diabetes is a complex disease that is typified by the simultaneous presence of type 2 diabetes and many forms of liver disease. The chief pathogenic determinant in this pathophysiological network is insulin resistance (IR), an asymptomatic disease state in which impaired insulin signaling in target tissues initiates a variety of organ dysfunctions. However, pharmacotherapies targeting IR remain limited and are generally inapplicable for liver disease patients. Oleanolic acid (OA) is a plant-derived triterpenoid that is frequently used in Chinese medicine as a safe but slow-acting treatment in many liver disorders. Here, we utilized the congruent pharmacological activities of OA and glucagon-like-peptide 1 (GLP-1) in relieving IR and improving liver and pancreas functions and used a synthetic-biology-inspired design principle to engineer a therapeutic gene circuit that enables a concerted action of both drugs. In particular, OA-triggered short human GLP-1 (shGLP-1) expression in hepatogenous diabetic mice rapidly and simultaneously attenuated many disease-specific metabolic failures, whereas OA or shGLP-1 monotherapy failed to achieve corresponding therapeutic effects. Collectively, this work shows that rationally engineered synthetic gene circuits are capable of treating multifactorial diseases in a synergistic manner by multiplexing the targeting efficacies of single therapeutics. Copyright © 2017 The American Society of Gene and Cell Therapy. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Design of a biologically inspired lower limb exoskeleton for human gait rehabilitation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyu, Mingxing; Chen, Weihai; Ding, Xilun; Wang, Jianhua; Bai, Shaoping; Ren, Huichao

    2016-10-01

    This paper proposes a novel bionic model of the human leg according to the theory of physiology. Based on this model, we present a biologically inspired 3-degree of freedom (DOF) lower limb exoskeleton for human gait rehabilitation, showing that the lower limb exoskeleton is fully compatible with the human knee joint. The exoskeleton has a hybrid serial-parallel kinematic structure consisting of a 1-DOF hip joint module and a 2-DOF knee joint module in the sagittal plane. A planar 2-DOF parallel mechanism is introduced in the design to fully accommodate the motion of the human knee joint, which features not only rotation but also relative sliding. Therefore, the design is consistent with the requirements of bionics. The forward and inverse kinematic analysis is studied and the workspace of the exoskeleton is analyzed. The structural parameters are optimized to obtain a larger workspace. The results using MATLAB-ADAMS co-simulation are shown in this paper to demonstrate the feasibility of our design. A prototype of the exoskeleton is also developed and an experiment performed to verify the kinematic analysis. Compared with existing lower limb exoskeletons, the designed mechanism has a large workspace, while allowing knee joint rotation and small amount of sliding.

  13. Design of a biologically inspired lower limb exoskeleton for human gait rehabilitation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyu, Mingxing; Chen, Weihai; Ding, Xilun; Wang, Jianhua; Bai, Shaoping; Ren, Huichao

    2016-10-01

    This paper proposes a novel bionic model of the human leg according to the theory of physiology. Based on this model, we present a biologically inspired 3-degree of freedom (DOF) lower limb exoskeleton for human gait rehabilitation, showing that the lower limb exoskeleton is fully compatible with the human knee joint. The exoskeleton has a hybrid serial-parallel kinematic structure consisting of a 1-DOF hip joint module and a 2-DOF knee joint module in the sagittal plane. A planar 2-DOF parallel mechanism is introduced in the design to fully accommodate the motion of the human knee joint, which features not only rotation but also relative sliding. Therefore, the design is consistent with the requirements of bionics. The forward and inverse kinematic analysis is studied and the workspace of the exoskeleton is analyzed. The structural parameters are optimized to obtain a larger workspace. The results using MATLAB-ADAMS co-simulation are shown in this paper to demonstrate the feasibility of our design. A prototype of the exoskeleton is also developed and an experiment performed to verify the kinematic analysis. Compared with existing lower limb exoskeletons, the designed mechanism has a large workspace, while allowing knee joint rotation and small amount of sliding.

  14. Biologically inspired multi-layered synthetic skin for tactile feedback in prosthetic limbs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osborn, Luke; Nguyen, Harrison; Betthauser, Joseph; Kaliki, Rahul; Thakor, Nitish

    2016-08-01

    The human body offers a template for many state-of-the-art prosthetic devices and sensors. In this work, we present a novel, sensorized synthetic skin that mimics the natural multi-layered nature of mechanoreceptors found in healthy glabrous skin to provide tactile information. The multi-layered sensor is made up of flexible piezoresistive textiles that act as force sensitive resistors (FSRs) to convey tactile information, which are embedded within a silicone rubber to resemble the compliant nature of human skin. The top layer of the synthetic skin is capable of detecting small loads less than 5 N whereas the bottom sensing layer responds reliably to loads over 7 N. Finite element analysis (FEA) of a simplified human fingertip and the synthetic skin was performed. Results suggest similarities in behavior during loading. A natural tactile event is simulated by loading the synthetic skin on a prosthetic limb. Results show the sensors' ability to detect applied loads as well as the ability to simulate neural spiking activity based on the derivative and temporal differences of the sensor response. During the tactile loading, the top sensing layer responded 0.24 s faster than the bottom sensing layer. A synthetic biologically-inspired skin such as this will be useful for enhancing the functionality of prosthetic limbs through tactile feedback.

  15. A Biologically Inspired Approach to Frequency Domain Feature Extraction for EEG Classification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nurhan Gursel Ozmen

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Classification of electroencephalogram (EEG signal is important in mental decoding for brain-computer interfaces (BCI. We introduced a feature extraction approach based on frequency domain analysis to improve the classification performance on different mental tasks using single-channel EEG. This biologically inspired method extracts the most discriminative spectral features from power spectral densities (PSDs of the EEG signals. We applied our method on a dataset of six subjects who performed five different imagination tasks: (i resting state, (ii mental arithmetic, (iii imagination of left hand movement, (iv imagination of right hand movement, and (v imagination of letter “A.” Pairwise and multiclass classifications were performed in single EEG channel using Linear Discriminant Analysis and Support Vector Machines. Our method produced results (mean classification accuracy of 83.06% for binary classification and 91.85% for multiclassification that are on par with the state-of-the-art methods, using single-channel EEG with low computational cost. Among all task pairs, mental arithmetic versus letter imagination yielded the best result (mean classification accuracy of 90.29%, indicating that this task pair could be the most suitable pair for a binary class BCI. This study contributes to the development of single-channel BCI, as well as finding the best task pair for user defined applications.

  16. 16th International Conference on Hybrid Intelligent Systems and the 8th World Congress on Nature and Biologically Inspired Computing

    CERN Document Server

    Haqiq, Abdelkrim; Alimi, Adel; Mezzour, Ghita; Rokbani, Nizar; Muda, Azah

    2017-01-01

    This book presents the latest research in hybrid intelligent systems. It includes 57 carefully selected papers from the 16th International Conference on Hybrid Intelligent Systems (HIS 2016) and the 8th World Congress on Nature and Biologically Inspired Computing (NaBIC 2016), held on November 21–23, 2016 in Marrakech, Morocco. HIS - NaBIC 2016 was jointly organized by the Machine Intelligence Research Labs (MIR Labs), USA; Hassan 1st University, Settat, Morocco and University of Sfax, Tunisia. Hybridization of intelligent systems is a promising research field in modern artificial/computational intelligence and is concerned with the development of the next generation of intelligent systems. The conference’s main aim is to inspire further exploration of the intriguing potential of hybrid intelligent systems and bio-inspired computing. As such, the book is a valuable resource for practicing engineers /scientists and researchers working in the field of computational intelligence and artificial intelligence.

  17. A biological inspired fuzzy adaptive window median filter (FAWMF) for enhancing DNA signal processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmad, Muneer; Jung, Low Tan; Bhuiyan, Al-Amin

    2017-10-01

    Digital signal processing techniques commonly employ fixed length window filters to process the signal contents. DNA signals differ in characteristics from common digital signals since they carry nucleotides as contents. The nucleotides own genetic code context and fuzzy behaviors due to their special structure and order in DNA strand. Employing conventional fixed length window filters for DNA signal processing produce spectral leakage and hence results in signal noise. A biological context aware adaptive window filter is required to process the DNA signals. This paper introduces a biological inspired fuzzy adaptive window median filter (FAWMF) which computes the fuzzy membership strength of nucleotides in each slide of window and filters nucleotides based on median filtering with a combination of s-shaped and z-shaped filters. Since coding regions cause 3-base periodicity by an unbalanced nucleotides' distribution producing a relatively high bias for nucleotides' usage, such fundamental characteristic of nucleotides has been exploited in FAWMF to suppress the signal noise. Along with adaptive response of FAWMF, a strong correlation between median nucleotides and the Π shaped filter was observed which produced enhanced discrimination between coding and non-coding regions contrary to fixed length conventional window filters. The proposed FAWMF attains a significant enhancement in coding regions identification i.e. 40% to 125% as compared to other conventional window filters tested over more than 250 benchmarked and randomly taken DNA datasets of different organisms. This study proves that conventional fixed length window filters applied to DNA signals do not achieve significant results since the nucleotides carry genetic code context. The proposed FAWMF algorithm is adaptive and outperforms significantly to process DNA signal contents. The algorithm applied to variety of DNA datasets produced noteworthy discrimination between coding and non-coding regions contrary

  18. Biomimetic vibrissal sensing for robots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearson, Martin J; Mitchinson, Ben; Sullivan, J Charles; Pipe, Anthony G; Prescott, Tony J

    2011-11-12

    Active vibrissal touch can be used to replace or to supplement sensory systems such as computer vision and, therefore, improve the sensory capacity of mobile robots. This paper describes how arrays of whisker-like touch sensors have been incorporated onto mobile robot platforms taking inspiration from biology for their morphology and control. There were two motivations for this work: first, to build a physical platform on which to model, and therefore test, recent neuroethological hypotheses about vibrissal touch; second, to exploit the control strategies and morphology observed in the biological analogue to maximize the quality and quantity of tactile sensory information derived from the artificial whisker array. We describe the design of a new whiskered robot, Shrewbot, endowed with a biomimetic array of individually controlled whiskers and a neuroethologically inspired whisking pattern generation mechanism. We then present results showing how the morphology of the whisker array shapes the sensory surface surrounding the robot's head, and demonstrate the impact of active touch control on the sensory information that can be acquired by the robot. We show that adopting bio-inspired, low latency motor control of the rhythmic motion of the whiskers in response to contact-induced stimuli usefully constrains the sensory range, while also maximizing the number of whisker contacts. The robot experiments also demonstrate that the sensory consequences of active touch control can be usefully investigated in biomimetic robots.

  19. In vivo robotics: the automation of neuroscience and other intact-system biological fields.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kodandaramaiah, Suhasa B; Boyden, Edward S; Forest, Craig R

    2013-12-01

    Robotic and automation technologies have played a huge role in in vitro biological science, having proved critical for scientific endeavors such as genome sequencing and high-throughput screening. Robotic and automation strategies are beginning to play a greater role in in vivo and in situ sciences, especially when it comes to the difficult in vivo experiments required for understanding the neural mechanisms of behavior and disease. In this perspective, we discuss the prospects for robotics and automation to influence neuroscientific and intact-system biology fields. We discuss how robotic innovations might be created to open up new frontiers in basic and applied neuroscience and present a concrete example with our recent automation of in vivo whole-cell patch clamp electrophysiology of neurons in the living mouse brain. © 2013 New York Academy of Sciences.

  20. Anatomy-Based Organization of Modular Robots

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, David Johan; Campbell, Jason

    2008-01-01

    This paper presents a novel biologically inspired hierarchical approach to organizing and controlling modular robots. The purpose of our approach is to decompose the complexity of assembling and commanding a functional robot made of numerous simple modules (thousands to millions) by introducing...... a hierarchy of structure and control. The robots we describe incorporate anatomically inspired parts such as muscles, bones and joints, and these parts in turn are assembled from modules. Each of those parts encapsulates one or more functions, e.g. a muscle can contract. Control of the robot can then be cast...... as a problem of controlling its anatomical parts rather than each discrete module. We show simulation results from experiments using gradient-based primitives to control parts of increasingly complex robots, including snake, crawler, cilia-surface, arm-joint-muscle and grasping robots. We conclude...

  1. A Scalable Neuro-inspired Robot Controller Integrating a Machine Learning Algorithm and a Spiking Cerebellar-like Network

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Baira Ojeda, Ismael; Tolu, Silvia; Lund, Henrik Hautop

    2017-01-01

    Combining Fable robot, a modular robot, with a neuroinspired controller, we present the proof of principle of a system that can scale to several neurally controlled compliant modules. The motor control and learning of a robot module are carried out by a Unit Learning Machine (ULM) that embeds...... the Locally Weighted Projection Regression algorithm (LWPR) and a spiking cerebellar-like microcircuit. The LWPR guarantees both an optimized representation of the input space and the learning of the dynamic internal model (IM) of the robot. However, the cerebellar-like sub-circuit integrates LWPR input...

  2. Integrating biologically inspired nanomaterials and table-top stereolithography for 3D printed biomimetic osteochondral scaffolds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castro, Nathan J.; O'Brien, Joseph; Zhang, Lijie Grace

    2015-08-01

    The osteochondral interface of an arthritic joint is notoriously difficult to regenerate due to its extremely poor regenerative capacity and complex stratified architecture. Native osteochondral tissue extracellular matrix is composed of numerous nanoscale organic and inorganic constituents. Although various tissue engineering strategies exist in addressing osteochondral defects, limitations persist with regards to tissue scaffolding which exhibit biomimetic cues at the nano to micro scale. In an effort to address this, the current work focused on 3D printing biomimetic nanocomposite scaffolds for improved osteochondral tissue regeneration. For this purpose, two biologically-inspired nanomaterials have been synthesized consisting of (1) osteoconductive nanocrystalline hydroxyapatite (nHA) (primary inorganic component of bone) and (2) core-shell poly(lactic-co-glycolic) acid (PLGA) nanospheres encapsulated with chondrogenic transforming growth-factor β1 (TGF-β1) for sustained delivery. Then, a novel table-top stereolithography 3D printer and the nano-ink (i.e., nHA + nanosphere + hydrogel) were employed to fabricate a porous and highly interconnected osteochondral scaffold with hierarchical nano-to-micro structure and spatiotemporal bioactive factor gradients. Our results showed that human bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cell adhesion, proliferation, and osteochondral differentiation were greatly improved in the biomimetic graded 3D printed osteochondral construct in vitro. The current work served to illustrate the efficacy of the nano-ink and current 3D printing technology for efficient fabrication of a novel nanocomposite hydrogel scaffold. In addition, tissue-specific growth factors illustrated a synergistic effect leading to increased cell adhesion and directed stem cell differentiation.

  3. Novel biologically-inspired rosette nanotube PLLA scaffolds for improving human mesenchymal stem cell chondrogenic differentiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Childs, Allie; Castro, Nathan J; Zhang, Lijie Grace; Hemraz, Usha D; Fenniri, Hicham

    2013-01-01

    Cartilage defects are a persistent issue in orthopedic tissue engineering where acute and chronic tissue damage stemming from osteoarthritis, trauma, and sport injuries, present a common and serious clinical problem. Unlike bone, cartilage repair continues to be largely intractable due to the tissue's inherently poor regenerative capacity. Thus, the objective of this study is to design a novel tissue engineered nanostructured cartilage scaffold via biologically-inspired self-assembling rosette nanotubes (RNTs) and biocompatible non-woven poly (l-lactic acid) (PLLA) for enhanced human bone marrow mesenchymal stem cell (hMSC) chondrogenic differentiation. Specifically, RNTs are a new class of biomimetic supramolecular nanomaterial obtained through the self-assembly of low-molecular-weight modified guanine/cytosine DNA base hybrids (the G∧C motif) in an aqueous environment. In this study, we synthesized a novel twin G∧C-based RNT (TB-RGDSK) functionalized with cell-favorable arginine–glycine–aspartic acid–serine–lysine (RGDSK) integrin binding peptide and a twin G∧C based RNT with an aminobutane linker molecule (TBL). hMSC adhesion, proliferation and chondrogenic differentiation were evaluated in vitro in scaffold groups consisting of biocompatible PLLA with TBL, 1:9 TB-RGDSK:TBL, and TB-RGDSK, respectively. Our results show that RNTs can remarkably increase total glycosaminoglycan, collagen, and protein production when compared to PLLA controls without nanotubes. Furthermore, the TB-RGDSK with 100% well-organized RGDSK peptides achieved the highest chondrogenic differentiation of hMSCs. The current in vitro study illustrated that RNT nanotopography and surface chemistry played an important role in enhancing hMSC chondrogenic differentiation thus making them promising for cartilage regeneration. (paper)

  4. Mechanical Design of Odin, an Extendable Heterogeneous Deformable Modular Robot

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lyder, Andreas; Garcia, Ricardo Franco Mendoza; Støy, Kasper

    2008-01-01

    Highly sophisticated animals consist of a set of heterogenous modules decided by nature so that they can survive in a complex environment. In this paper we present a new modular robot inspired by biology called Odin. The Odin robot is based on a deformable lattice and consists of an extendable se...

  5. Humanlike Robots - The Upcoming Revolution in Robotics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph

    2009-01-01

    Humans have always sought to imitate the human appearance, functions and intelligence. Human-like robots, which for many years have been a science fiction, are increasingly becoming an engineering reality resulting from the many advances in biologically inspired technologies. These biomimetic technologies include artificial intelligence, artificial vision and hearing as well as artificial muscles, also known as electroactive polymers (EAP). Robots, such as the vacuum cleaner Rumba and the robotic lawnmower, that don't have human shape, are already finding growing use in homes worldwide. As opposed to other human-made machines and devices, this technology raises also various questions and concerns and they need to be addressed as the technology advances. These include the need to prevent accidents, deliberate harm, or their use in crime. In this paper the state-of-the-art of the ultimate goal of biomimetics, the development of humanlike robots, the potentials and the challenges are reviewed.

  6. Humanlike robots: the upcoming revolution in robotics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph

    2009-08-01

    Humans have always sought to imitate the human appearance, functions and intelligence. Human-like robots, which for many years have been a science fiction, are increasingly becoming an engineering reality resulting from the many advances in biologically inspired technologies. These biomimetic technologies include artificial intelligence, artificial vision and hearing as well as artificial muscles, also known as electroactive polymers (EAP). Robots, such as the vacuum cleaner Rumba and the robotic lawnmower, that don't have human shape, are already finding growing use in homes worldwide. As opposed to other human-made machines and devices, this technology raises also various questions and concerns and they need to be addressed as the technology advances. These include the need to prevent accidents, deliberate harm, or their use in crime. In this paper the state-of-the-art of the ultimate goal of biomimetics, the development of humanlike robots, the potentials and the challenges are reviewed.

  7. Optical robotics in a biological micro-environment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Glückstad, Jesper

    with the use of joysticks or gaming devices. The fabrication of microstructures with nanometer sized features, for example a nano-needle, coupled with the real-time user interactive optical control allows a user to robotically actuate appended nanostructures depending on their intended function. These micro...

  8. Novel Approaches for Bio-inspired Mechano-Sensors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Bilberg, Arne

    2011-01-01

    In this paper, we present novel approaches for building tactile- array sensors for use in robotic grippers inspired from biology. We start by describing the sense of touch for humans and we continue by propos- ing dierent methods to build sensors that mimic this behaviour. For the static tactile...

  9. Design, Simulation, Fabrication and Testing of a Bio-Inspired Amphibious Robot with Multiple Modes of Mobility

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    tail. 8. Discussion 8.1. General Mobility and Stair Climbing Maximum speed and turning radius compare favorably to our past WhegsTM robots . It should be...SeaDog. Climbing three or more stairs is difficult for the robot . The robot’s zero turn radius and the intermittent nature of the wheel-legs make it...Int. J. of Design and Nature, Vol.4, No.4, pp. 1-18, 2009. [18] M. Eich, F. Grimminger, and F. Kirchner, “A Versatile Stair - Climb - ing Robot for

  10. Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santello, Marco; Bianchi, Matteo; Gabiccini, Marco; Ricciardi, Emiliano; Salvietti, Gionata; Prattichizzo, Domenico; Ernst, Marc; Moscatelli, Alessandro; Jörntell, Henrik; Kappers, Astrid M.L.; Kyriakopoulos, Kostas; Albu-Schäffer, Alin; Castellini, Claudio; Bicchi, Antonio

    2017-01-01

    The term ‘synergy’ – from the Greek synergia – means ‘working together’. The concept of multiple elements working together towards a common goal has been extensively used in neuroscience to develop theoretical frameworks, experimental approaches, and analytical techniques to understand neural control of movement, and for applications for neuro-rehabilitation. In the past decade, roboticists have successfully applied the framework of synergies to create novel design and control concepts for artificial hands, i.e., robotic hands and prostheses. At the same time, robotic research on the sensorimotor integration underlying the control and sensing of artificial hands has inspired new research approaches in neuroscience, and has provided useful instruments for novel experiments. The ambitious goal of integrating expertise and research approaches in robotics and neuroscience to study the properties and applications of the concept of synergies is generating a number of multidisciplinary cooperative projects, among which the recently finished 4-year European project “The Hand Embodied” (THE). This paper reviews the main insights provided by this framework. Specifically, we provide an overview of neuroscientific bases of hand synergies and introduce how robotics has leveraged the insights from neuroscience for innovative design in hardware and controllers for biomedical engineering applications, including myoelectric hand prostheses, devices for haptics research, and wearable sensing of human hand kinematics. The review also emphasizes how this multidisciplinary collaboration has generated new ways to conceptualize a synergy-based approach for robotics, and provides guidelines and principles for analyzing human behavior and synthesizing artificial robotic systems based on a theory of synergies. PMID:26923030

  11. Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santello, Marco; Bianchi, Matteo; Gabiccini, Marco; Ricciardi, Emiliano; Salvietti, Gionata; Prattichizzo, Domenico; Ernst, Marc; Moscatelli, Alessandro; Jörntell, Henrik; Kappers, Astrid M L; Kyriakopoulos, Kostas; Albu-Schäffer, Alin; Castellini, Claudio; Bicchi, Antonio

    2016-07-01

    The term 'synergy' - from the Greek synergia - means 'working together'. The concept of multiple elements working together towards a common goal has been extensively used in neuroscience to develop theoretical frameworks, experimental approaches, and analytical techniques to understand neural control of movement, and for applications for neuro-rehabilitation. In the past decade, roboticists have successfully applied the framework of synergies to create novel design and control concepts for artificial hands, i.e., robotic hands and prostheses. At the same time, robotic research on the sensorimotor integration underlying the control and sensing of artificial hands has inspired new research approaches in neuroscience, and has provided useful instruments for novel experiments. The ambitious goal of integrating expertise and research approaches in robotics and neuroscience to study the properties and applications of the concept of synergies is generating a number of multidisciplinary cooperative projects, among which the recently finished 4-year European project "The Hand Embodied" (THE). This paper reviews the main insights provided by this framework. Specifically, we provide an overview of neuroscientific bases of hand synergies and introduce how robotics has leveraged the insights from neuroscience for innovative design in hardware and controllers for biomedical engineering applications, including myoelectric hand prostheses, devices for haptics research, and wearable sensing of human hand kinematics. The review also emphasizes how this multidisciplinary collaboration has generated new ways to conceptualize a synergy-based approach for robotics, and provides guidelines and principles for analyzing human behavior and synthesizing artificial robotic systems based on a theory of synergies. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Electroactive polymer (EAP) actuators for future humanlike robots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph

    2009-03-01

    Human-like robots are increasingly becoming an engineering reality thanks to recent technology advances. These robots, which are inspired greatly by science fiction, were originated from the desire to reproduce the human appearance, functions and intelligence and they may become our household appliance or even companion. The development of such robots is greatly supported by emerging biologically inspired technologies. Potentially, electroactive polymer (EAP) materials are offering actuation capabilities that allow emulating the action of our natural muscles for making such machines perform lifelike. There are many technical issues related to making such robots including the need for EAP materials that can operate as effective actuators. Beside the technology challenges these robots also raise concerns that need to be addressed prior to forming super capable robots. These include the need to prevent accidents, deliberate harm, or their use in crimes. In this paper, the potential EAP actuators and the challenges that these robots may pose will be reviewed.

  13. Electroactive Polymer (EAP) Actuators for Future Humanlike Robots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph

    2009-01-01

    Human-like robots are increasingly becoming an engineering reality thanks to recent technology advances. These robots, which are inspired greatly by science fiction, were originated from the desire to reproduce the human appearance, functions and intelligence and they may become our household appliance or even companion. The development of such robots is greatly supported by emerging biologically inspired technologies. Potentially, electroactive polymer (EAP) materials are offering actuation capabilities that allow emulating the action of our natural muscles for making such machines perform lifelike. There are many technical issues related to making such robots including the need for EAP materials that can operate as effective actuators. Beside the technology challenges these robots also raise concerns that need to be addressed prior to forming super capable robots. These include the need to prevent accidents, deliberate harm, or their use in crimes. In this paper, the potential EAP actuators and the challenges that these robots may pose will be reviewed.

  14. Mechanical Design of Odin, an Extendable Heterogeneous Deformable Modular Robot

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lyder, Andreas; Garcia, Ricardo Franco Mendoza; Støy, Kasper

    2008-01-01

    Highly sophisticated animals consist of a set of heterogenous modules decided by nature so that they can survive in a complex environment. In this paper we present a new modular robot inspired by biology called Odin. The Odin robot is based on a deformable lattice and consists of an extendable se...... of heterogeneous modules. We present the design and implementation of a cubic closed-packed (CCP) joint module, a telescoping link, and a flexible connection mechanism. The developed robot is highly versatile and opens up for a wide range of new research in modular robotics.......Highly sophisticated animals consist of a set of heterogenous modules decided by nature so that they can survive in a complex environment. In this paper we present a new modular robot inspired by biology called Odin. The Odin robot is based on a deformable lattice and consists of an extendable set...

  15. Biomimetic Spider Leg Joints: A Review from Biomechanical Research to Compliant Robotic Actuators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefan Landkammer

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Due to their inherent compliance, soft actuated joints are becoming increasingly important for robotic applications, especially when human-robot-interactions are expected. Several of these flexible actuators are inspired by biological models. One perfect showpiece for biomimetic robots is the spider leg, because it combines lightweight design and graceful movements with powerful and dynamic actuation. Building on this motivation, the review article focuses on compliant robotic joints inspired by the function principle of the spider leg. The mechanism is introduced by an overview of existing biological and biomechanical research. Thereupon a classification of robots that are bio-inspired by spider joints is presented. Based on this, the biomimetic robot applications referring to the spider principle are identified and discussed.

  16. Robotics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Scheide, A.W.

    1983-01-01

    This article reviews some of the technical areas and history associated with robotics, provides information relative to the formation of a Robotics Industry Committee within the Industry Applications Society (IAS), and describes how all activities relating to robotics will be coordinated within the IEEE. Industrial robots are being used for material handling, processes such as coating and arc welding, and some mechanical and electronics assembly. An industrial robot is defined as a programmable, multifunctional manipulator designed to move material, parts, tools, or specialized devices through variable programmed motions for a variety of tasks. The initial focus of the Robotics Industry Committee will be on the application of robotics systems to the various industries that are represented within the IAS

  17. Swarm robotics and minimalism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharkey, Amanda J. C.

    2007-09-01

    Swarm Robotics (SR) is closely related to Swarm Intelligence, and both were initially inspired by studies of social insects. Their guiding principles are based on their biological inspiration and take the form of an emphasis on decentralized local control and communication. Earlier studies went a step further in emphasizing the use of simple reactive robots that only communicate indirectly through the environment. More recently SR studies have moved beyond these constraints to explore the use of non-reactive robots that communicate directly, and that can learn and represent their environment. There is no clear agreement in the literature about how far such extensions of the original principles could go. Should there be any limitations on the individual abilities of the robots used in SR studies? Should knowledge of the capabilities of social insects lead to constraints on the capabilities of individual robots in SR studies? There is a lack of explicit discussion of such questions, and researchers have adopted a variety of constraints for a variety of reasons. A simple taxonomy of swarm robotics is presented here with the aim of addressing and clarifying these questions. The taxonomy distinguishes subareas of SR based on the emphases and justifications for minimalism and individual simplicity.

  18. Robotics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lorino, P; Altwegg, J M

    1985-05-01

    This article, which is aimed at the general reader, examines latest developments in, and the role of, modern robotics. The 7 main sections are sub-divided into 27 papers presented by 30 authors. The sections are as follows: 1) The role of robotics, 2) Robotics in the business world and what it can offer, 3) Study and development, 4) Utilisation, 5) Wages, 6) Conditions for success, and 7) Technological dynamics.

  19. Influence of robotic shoal size, configuration, and activity on zebrafish behavior in a free-swimming environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butail, Sachit; Polverino, Giovanni; Phamduy, Paul; Del Sette, Fausto; Porfiri, Maurizio

    2014-12-15

    In animal studies, robots have been recently used as a valid tool for testing a wide spectrum of hypotheses. These robots often exploit visual or auditory cues to modulate animal behavior. The propensity of zebrafish, a model organism in biological studies, toward fish with similar color patterns and shape has been leveraged to design biologically inspired robots that successfully attract zebrafish in preference tests. With an aim of extending the application of such robots to field studies, here, we investigate the response of zebrafish to multiple robotic fish swimming at different speeds and in varying arrangements. A soft real-time multi-target tracking and control system remotely steers the robots in circular trajectories during the experimental trials. Our findings indicate a complex behavioral response of zebrafish to biologically inspired robots. More robots produce a significant change in salient measures of stress, with a fast robot swimming alone causing more freezing and erratic activity than two robots swimming slowly together. In addition, fish spend more time in the proximity of a robot when they swim far apart than when the robots swim close to each other. Increase in the number of robots also significantly alters the degree of alignment of fish motion with a robot. Results from this study are expected to advance our understanding of robot perception by live animals and aid in hypothesis-driven studies in unconstrained free-swimming environments. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Sociable Robots Through Self-Maintained Energy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Trung Dung Ngo

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Research of autonomous mobile robots has mostly emphasized interaction and coordination that are natually inspired from biological behavior of birds, insects, and fish: flocking, foraging, collecting, and sharing. However, most research has been only focused on autonomous behaviors in order to perform robots like animals, whereas it is lacked of determinant to those behaviours: energy. Approaching to clusted amimal and the higher, collective and sharing food among individuals are major activity to keep society being. This paper issues an approach to sociable robots using self-maintained energy in cooperative mobile robots, which is dominantly inspired from swarm behavior of collecting and sharing food of honey-bee and ant. Autonomous mobile robots are usually equipped with a finite energy, thus they can operate in a finite time. To overcome the finitude, we describe practical deployment of mobile robots that are capable of carrying and exchanging fuel to other robots. Mechanism implementation including modular hardware and control architecture to demonstrate the capabicities of the approach is presented. Subsequently, the battery exchange algorithm basically based on probabilistic modeling of total energy on each robot located in its local vicinity is described. The paper is concluded with challenging works of chain of mobile robots, rescue, repair, and relation of heterogeneous robots.

  1. Sociable Robots through Self-maintained Energy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henrik Schioler

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available Research of autonomous mobile robots has mostly emphasized interaction and coordination that are natually inspired from biological behavior of birds, insects, and fish: flocking, foraging, collecting, and sharing. However, most research has been only focused on autonomous behaviors in order to perform robots like animals, whereas it is lacked of determinant to those behaviours: energy. Approaching to clusted amimal and the higher, collective and sharing food among individuals are major activity to keep society being. This paper issues an approach to sociable robots using self-maintained energy in cooperative mobile robots, which is dominantly inspired from swarm behavior of collecting and sharing food of honey-bee and ant. Autonomous mobile robots are usually equipped with a finite energy, thus they can operate in a finite time. To overcome the finitude, we describe practical deployment of mobile robots that are capable of carrying and exchanging fuel to other robots. Mechanism implementation including modular hardware and control architecture to demonstrate the capabicities of the approach is presented. Subsequently, the battery exchange algorithm basically based on probabilistic modeling of total energy on each robot located in its local vicinity is described. The paper is concluded with challenging works of chain of mobile robots, rescue, repair, and relation of heterogeneous robots.

  2. Bio-inspired control of joint torque and knee stiffness in a robotic lower limb exoskeleton using a central pattern generator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schrade, Stefan O; Nager, Yannik; Wu, Amy R; Gassert, Roger; Ijspeert, Auke

    2017-07-01

    Robotic lower limb exoskeletons are becoming increasingly popular in therapy and recreational use. However, most exoskeletons are still rather limited in their locomotion speed and the activities of daily live they can perform. Furthermore, they typically do not allow for a dynamic adaptation to the environment, as they are often controlled with predefined reference trajectories. Inspired by human leg stiffness modulation during walking, variable stiffness actuators increase flexibility without the need for more complex controllers. Actuation with adaptable stiffness is inspired by the human leg stiffness modulation during walking. However, this actuation principle also introduces the stiffness setpoint as an additional degree of freedom that needs to be coordinated with the joint trajectories. As a potential solution to this issue a bio-inspired controller based on a central pattern generator (CPG) is presented in this work. It generates coordinated joint torques and knee stiffness modulations to produce flexible and dynamic gait patterns for an exoskeleton with variable knee stiffness actuation. The CPG controller is evaluated and optimized in simulation using a model of the exoskeleton. The CPG controller produced stable and smooth gait for walking speeds from 0.4 m/s up to 1.57 m/s with a torso stabilizing force that simulated the use of crutches, which are commonly needed by exoskeleton users. Through the CPG, the knee stiffness intrinsically adapted to the frequency and phase of the gait, when the speed was changed. Additionally, it adjusted to changes in the environment in the form of uneven terrain by reacting to ground contact forces. This could allow future exoskeletons to be more adaptive to various environments, thus making ambulation more robust.

  3. Artificial heart for humanoid robot

    Science.gov (United States)

    Potnuru, Akshay; Wu, Lianjun; Tadesse, Yonas

    2014-03-01

    A soft robotic device inspired by the pumping action of a biological heart is presented in this study. Developing artificial heart to a humanoid robot enables us to make a better biomedical device for ultimate use in humans. As technology continues to become more advanced, the methods in which we implement high performance and biomimetic artificial organs is getting nearer each day. In this paper, we present the design and development of a soft artificial heart that can be used in a humanoid robot and simulate the functions of a human heart using shape memory alloy technology. The robotic heart is designed to pump a blood-like fluid to parts of the robot such as the face to simulate someone blushing or when someone is angry by the use of elastomeric substrates and certain features for the transport of fluids.

  4. Combining Bio-inspired Sensing with Bio-inspired Locomotion

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Shaikh, Danish; Hallam, John; Christensen-Dalsgaard, Jakob

    In this paper we present a preliminary Braitenberg vehicle–like approach to combine bio-inspired audition with bio-inspired quadruped locomotion in simulation. Locomotion gaits of the salamander–like robot Salamandra robotica are modified by a lizard’s peripheral auditory system model that modula......In this paper we present a preliminary Braitenberg vehicle–like approach to combine bio-inspired audition with bio-inspired quadruped locomotion in simulation. Locomotion gaits of the salamander–like robot Salamandra robotica are modified by a lizard’s peripheral auditory system model...

  5. A Biologically-Inspired Power Control Algorithm for Energy-Efficient Cellular Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hyun-Ho Choi

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Most of the energy used to operate a cellular network is consumed by a base station (BS, and reducing the transmission power of a BS can therefore afford a substantial reduction in the amount of energy used in a network. In this paper, we propose a distributed transmit power control (TPC algorithm inspired by bird flocking behavior as a means of improving the energy efficiency of a cellular network. Just as each bird in a flock attempts to match its velocity with the average velocity of adjacent birds, in the proposed algorithm, each mobile station (MS in a cell matches its rate with the average rate of the co-channel MSs in adjacent cells by controlling the transmit power of its serving BS. We verify that this bio-inspired TPC algorithm using a local rate-average process achieves an exponential convergence and maximizes the minimum rate of the MSs concerned. Simulation results show that the proposed TPC algorithm follows the same convergence properties as the flocking algorithm and also effectively reduces the power consumption at the BSs while maintaining a low outage probability as the inter-cell interference increases; in so doing, it significantly improves the energy efficiency of a cellular network.

  6. Learning through Creating Robotic Models of Biological Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuperman, Dan; Verner, Igor M.

    2013-01-01

    This paper considers an approach to studying issues in technology and science, which integrates design and inquiry activities towards creating and exploring technological models of scientific phenomena. We implemented this approach in a context where the learner inquires into a biological phenomenon and develops its representation in the form of a…

  7. Soft Robotics Week

    CERN Document Server

    Rossiter, Jonathan; Iida, Fumiya; Cianchetti, Matteo; Margheri, Laura

    2017-01-01

    This book offers a comprehensive, timely snapshot of current research, technologies and applications of soft robotics. The different chapters, written by international experts across multiple fields of soft robotics, cover innovative systems and technologies for soft robot legged locomotion, soft robot manipulation, underwater soft robotics, biomimetic soft robotic platforms, plant-inspired soft robots, flying soft robots, soft robotics in surgery, as well as methods for their modeling and control. Based on the results of the second edition of the Soft Robotics Week, held on April 25 – 30, 2016, in Livorno, Italy, the book reports on the major research lines and novel technologies presented and discussed during the event.

  8. A biologically inspired artificial fish using flexible matrix composite actuators: analysis and experiment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang, Zhiye; Philen, Michael; Neu, Wayne

    2010-01-01

    A bio-inspired prototype fish using the flexible matrix composite (FMC) muscle technology for fin and body actuation is developed. FMC actuators are pressure driven muscle-like actuators capable of large displacements as well as large blocking forces. An analytical model of the artificial fish using FMC actuators is developed and analysis results are presented. An experimental prototype of the artificial fish having FMC artificial muscles has been completed and tested. Constant mean thrusts have been achieved in the laboratory for a stationary fish for different undulation frequencies around 1 Hz. The experimental results demonstrate that a nearly constant thrust can be achieved through tuning of excitation frequency for given body stiffness. Free swimming results show that the prototype can swim at approximately 0.3 m s −1

  9. On extracting design principles from biology: II. Case study—the effect of knee direction on bipedal robot running efficiency

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Haberland, M; Kim, S

    2015-01-01

    Comparing the leg of an ostrich to that of a human suggests an important question to legged robot designers: should a robot's leg joint bend in the direction of running (‘forwards’) or opposite (‘backwards’)? Biological studies cannot answer this question for engineers due to significant differences between the biological and engineering domains. Instead, we investigated the inherent effect of joint bending direction on bipedal robot running efficiency by comparing energetically optimal gaits of a wide variety of robot designs sampled at random from a design space. We found that the great majority of robot designs have several locally optimal gaits with the knee bending backwards that are more efficient than the most efficient gait with the knee bending forwards. The most efficient backwards gaits do not exhibit lower touchdown losses than the most efficient forward gaits; rather, the improved efficiency of backwards gaits stems from lower torque and reduced motion at the hip. The reduced hip use of backwards gaits is enabled by the ability of the backwards knee, acting alone, to (1) propel the robot upwards and forwards simultaneously and (2) lift and protract the foot simultaneously. In the absence of other information, designers interested in building efficient bipedal robots with two-segment legs driven by electric motors should design the knee to bend backwards rather than forwards. Compared to common practices for choosing robot knee direction, application of this principle would have a strong tendency to improve robot efficiency and save design resources. (paper)

  10. The Potential of Peer Robots to Assist Human Creativity in Finding Problems and Problem Solving

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okita, Sandra

    2015-01-01

    Many technological artifacts (e.g., humanoid robots, computer agents) consist of biologically inspired features of human-like appearance and behaviors that elicit a social response. The strong social components of technology permit people to share information and ideas with these artifacts. As robots cross the boundaries between humans and…

  11. Biologically-inspired robust and adaptive multi-sensor fusion and active control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khosla, Deepak; Dow, Paul A.; Huber, David J.

    2009-04-01

    In this paper, we describe a method and system for robust and efficient goal-oriented active control of a machine (e.g., robot) based on processing, hierarchical spatial understanding, representation and memory of multimodal sensory inputs. This work assumes that a high-level plan or goal is known a priori or is provided by an operator interface, which translates into an overall perceptual processing strategy for the machine. Its analogy to the human brain is the download of plans and decisions from the pre-frontal cortex into various perceptual working memories as a perceptual plan that then guides the sensory data collection and processing. For example, a goal might be to look for specific colored objects in a scene while also looking for specific sound sources. This paper combines three key ideas and methods into a single closed-loop active control system. (1) Use high-level plan or goal to determine and prioritize spatial locations or waypoints (targets) in multimodal sensory space; (2) collect/store information about these spatial locations at the appropriate hierarchy and representation in a spatial working memory. This includes invariant learning of these spatial representations and how to convert between them; and (3) execute actions based on ordered retrieval of these spatial locations from hierarchical spatial working memory and using the "right" level of representation that can efficiently translate into motor actions. In its most specific form, the active control is described for a vision system (such as a pantilt- zoom camera system mounted on a robotic head and neck unit) which finds and then fixates on high saliency visual objects. We also describe the approach where the goal is to turn towards and sequentially foveate on salient multimodal cues that include both visual and auditory inputs.

  12. The role of mechanics in biological and bio-inspired systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Egan, Paul; Sinko, Robert; LeDuc, Philip R; Keten, Sinan

    2015-07-06

    Natural systems frequently exploit intricate multiscale and multiphasic structures to achieve functionalities beyond those of man-made systems. Although understanding the chemical make-up of these systems is essential, the passive and active mechanics within biological systems are crucial when considering the many natural systems that achieve advanced properties, such as high strength-to-weight ratios and stimuli-responsive adaptability. Discovering how and why biological systems attain these desirable mechanical functionalities often reveals principles that inform new synthetic designs based on biological systems. Such approaches have traditionally found success in medical applications, and are now informing breakthroughs in diverse frontiers of science and engineering.

  13. iSpike: a spiking neural interface for the iCub robot

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gamez, D; Fidjeland, A K; Lazdins, E

    2012-01-01

    This paper presents iSpike: a C++ library that interfaces between spiking neural network simulators and the iCub humanoid robot. It uses a biologically inspired approach to convert the robot’s sensory information into spikes that are passed to the neural network simulator, and it decodes output spikes from the network into motor signals that are sent to control the robot. Applications of iSpike range from embodied models of the brain to the development of intelligent robots using biologically inspired spiking neural networks. iSpike is an open source library that is available for free download under the terms of the GPL. (paper)

  14. Computational intelligence in multi-feature visual pattern recognition hand posture and face recognition using biologically inspired approaches

    CERN Document Server

    Pisharady, Pramod Kumar; Poh, Loh Ai

    2014-01-01

    This book presents a collection of computational intelligence algorithms that addresses issues in visual pattern recognition such as high computational complexity, abundance of pattern features, sensitivity to size and shape variations and poor performance against complex backgrounds. The book has 3 parts. Part 1 describes various research issues in the field with a survey of the related literature. Part 2 presents computational intelligence based algorithms for feature selection and classification. The algorithms are discriminative and fast. The main application area considered is hand posture recognition. The book also discusses utility of these algorithms in other visual as well as non-visual pattern recognition tasks including face recognition, general object recognition and cancer / tumor classification. Part 3 presents biologically inspired algorithms for feature extraction. The visual cortex model based features discussed have invariance with respect to appearance and size of the hand, and provide good...

  15. Phase-assisted synthesis and DNA unpacking evaluation of biologically inspired metallo nanocomplexes using peptide as unique building block.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raman, N; Sudharsan, S

    2011-12-01

    The goal of nanomaterials' surface modification using a biomaterial is to preserve the materials' bulk properties while modifying only their surface to possess desired recognition and specificity. Here, we have developed a phase-assisted, modified Brust-Schiffrin methodological synthesis of metallo nanocomplexes anchored by a peptide, N,N'-(1,3-propylene)-bis-hippuricamide. The spectral, thermal and morphological characterizations assure the formation of nanocomplexes. Therapeutic behavior of all the nanocomplexes has been well sighted by evaluating their DNA unpacking skills. In addition, we demonstrate their biological inspiration by targeting few bacterial and fungal strains. The in vitro antimicrobial investigation reports that all the nanocomplexes disrupt microbial cell walls/membranes efficiently and inhibit the growth of microbes. These sorts of nanocomplexes synthesized in large quantities and at low cost, deliver versatile biomedical applications, and can be used to treat various diseases which may often cause high mortality. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Enhanced chondrocyte culture and growth on biologically inspired nanofibrous cell culture dishes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhardwaj, Garima; Webster, Thomas J

    2016-01-01

    Chondral and osteochondral defects affect a large number of people in which treatment options are currently limited. Due to its ability to mimic the natural nanofibrous structure of cartilage, this current in vitro study aimed at introducing a new scaffold, called XanoMatrix™, for cartilage regeneration. In addition, this same scaffold is introduced here as a new substrate onto which to study chondrocyte functions. Current studies on chondrocyte functions are limited due to nonbiologically inspired cell culture substrates. With its polyethylene terephthalate and cellulose acetate composition, good mechanical properties and nanofibrous structure resembling an extracellular matrix, XanoMatrix offers an ideal surface for chondrocyte growth and proliferation. This current study demonstrated that the XanoMatrix scaffolds promote chondrocyte growth and proliferation as compared with the Corning and Falcon surfaces normally used for chondrocyte cell culture. The XanoMatrix scaffolds also have greater hydrophobicity, three-dimensional surface area, and greater tensile strength, making them ideal candidates for alternative treatment options for chondral and osteochondral defects as well as cell culture substrates to study chondrocyte functions.

  17. A biologically inspired artificial muscle based on fiber-reinforced and electropneumatic dielectric elastomers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Lei; Zhang, Chi; Luo, Meng; Chen, Xi; Li, Dichen; Chen, Hualing

    2017-08-01

    Dielectric elastomers (DEs) have great potential for use as artificial muscles because of the following characteristics: electrical activity, fast and large deformation under stimuli, and softness as natural muscles. Inspired by the traditional McKibben actuators, in this study, we developed a cylindrical soft fiber-reinforced and electropneumatic DE artificial muscle (DEAM) by mimicking the spindle shape of natural muscles. Based on continuum mechanics and variation principle, the inhomogeneous actuation of DEAMs was theoretically modeled and calculated. Prototypes of DEAMs were prepared to validate the design concept and theoretical model. The theoretical predictions are consistent with the experimental results; they successfully predicted the evolutions of the contours of DEAMs with voltage. A pneumatically supported high prestretch in the hoop direction was achieved by our DEAM prototype without buckling the soft fibers sandwiched by the DE films. Besides, a continuously tunable prestretch in the actuation direction was achieved by varying the supporting pressure. Using the theoretical model, the failure modes, maximum actuations, and critical voltages were analyzed; they were highly dependent on the structural parameters, i.e., the cylinder aspect ratio, prestretch level, and supporting pressure. The effects of structural parameters and supporting pressure on the actuation performance were also investigated to optimize the DEAMs.

  18. RNA synthetic biology inspired from bacteria: construction of transcription attenuators under antisense regulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dawid, Alexandre; Cayrol, Bastien; Isambert, Hervé

    2009-07-01

    Among all biopolymers, ribonucleic acids or RNA have unique functional versatility, which led to the early suggestion that RNA alone (or a closely related biopolymer) might have once sustained a primitive form of life based on a single type of biopolymer. This has been supported by the demonstration of processive RNA-based replication and the discovery of 'riboswitches' or RNA switches, which directly sense their metabolic environment. In this paper, we further explore the plausibility of this 'RNA world' scenario and show, through synthetic molecular design guided by advanced RNA simulations, that RNA can also perform elementary regulation tasks on its own. We demonstrate that RNA synthetic regulatory modules directly inspired from bacterial transcription attenuators can efficiently activate or repress the expression of other RNA by merely controlling their folding paths 'on the fly' during transcription through simple RNA-RNA antisense interaction. Factors, such as NTP concentration and RNA synthesis rate, affecting the efficiency of this kinetic regulation mechanism are also studied and discussed in the light of evolutionary constraints. Overall, this suggests that direct coupling among synthesis, folding and regulation of RNAs may have enabled the early emergence of autonomous RNA-based regulation networks in absence of both DNA and protein partners.

  19. RNA synthetic biology inspired from bacteria: construction of transcription attenuators under antisense regulation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dawid, Alexandre; Cayrol, Bastien; Isambert, Hervé

    2009-01-01

    Among all biopolymers, ribonucleic acids or RNA have unique functional versatility, which led to the early suggestion that RNA alone (or a closely related biopolymer) might have once sustained a primitive form of life based on a single type of biopolymer. This has been supported by the demonstration of processive RNA-based replication and the discovery of 'riboswitches' or RNA switches, which directly sense their metabolic environment. In this paper, we further explore the plausibility of this 'RNA world' scenario and show, through synthetic molecular design guided by advanced RNA simulations, that RNA can also perform elementary regulation tasks on its own. We demonstrate that RNA synthetic regulatory modules directly inspired from bacterial transcription attenuators can efficiently activate or repress the expression of other RNA by merely controlling their folding paths 'on the fly' during transcription through simple RNA–RNA antisense interaction. Factors, such as NTP concentration and RNA synthesis rate, affecting the efficiency of this kinetic regulation mechanism are also studied and discussed in the light of evolutionary constraints. Overall, this suggests that direct coupling among synthesis, folding and regulation of RNAs may have enabled the early emergence of autonomous RNA-based regulation networks in absence of both DNA and protein partners

  20. Biological armors under impact—effect of keratin coating, and synthetic bio-inspired analogues

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Achrai, B; Wagner, H D; Bar-On, B

    2015-01-01

    A number of biological armors, such as turtle shells, consist of a strong exoskeleton covered with a thin keratin coating. The mechanical role upon impact of this keratin coating has surprisingly not been investigated thus far. Low-velocity impact tests on the turtle shell reveal a unique toughening phenomenon attributed to the thin covering keratin layer, the presence of which noticeably improves the fracture energy and shell integrity. Synthetic substrate/coating analogues were subsequently prepared and exhibit an impact behavior similar to the biological ones. The results of the present study may improve our understanding, and even future designs, of impact-tolerant structures. (paper)

  1. Biomimetics as a Model for Inspiring Human Innovation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph

    2006-01-01

    Electroactive polymers (EAP) are human made actuators that are the closest to mimic biological muscles. Technology was advanced to the level that biologically inspired robots are taking increasing roles in the world around us and making science fiction ideas a closer engineering reality. Artificial technologies (AI, AM, and others) are increasingly becoming practical tools for making biologically inspired devices and instruments with enormous potential for space applications. Polymer materials are used to produce figures that resemble human and animals. These materials are widely employed by the movie industry for making acting figures and by the orthopedic industry to construct cyborg components. There are still many challenges ahead that are critical to making such possibilities practical. The annual armwrestling contest is providing an exciting measure of how well advances in EAP are implemented to address the field challenges. There is a need to document natures inventions in an engineering form to possibly inspire new capabilities.

  2. An experimental study of double-peeling mechanism inspired by biological adhesive systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Heepe, Lars; Raguseo, Saverio; Gorb, Stanislav N.

    2017-01-01

    Double- (or multiple-) peeling systems consist of two (or numerous) tapes adhering to a substrate and having a common hinge, where the pulling force is applied. Biological systems, consisting of tape-like (or spatula-like) contact elements, are widely observed in adhesive pads of flies, beetles...

  3. Biology-inspired microphysiological system approaches to solve the prediction dilemma of substance testing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Marx, Uwe; Andersson, Tommy B; Bahinski, Anthony; Beilmann, Mario; Beken, Sonja; Cassee, Flemming R; Cirit, Murat; Daneshian, Mardas; Fitzpatrick, Susan; Frey, Olivier; Gaertner, Claudia; Giese, Christoph; Griffith, Linda; Hartung, Thomas; Heringa, Minne B; Hoeng, Julia; de Jong, Wim H; Kojima, Hajime; Kuehnl, Jochen; Leist, Marcel; Luch, Andreas; Maschmeyer, Ilka; Sakharov, Dmitry; Sips, Adrienne J A M; Steger-Hartmann, Thomas; Tagle, Danilo A; Tonevitsky, Alexander; Tralau, Tewes; Tsyb, Sergej; van de Stolpe, Anja; Vandebriel, Rob; Vulto, Paul; Wang, Jufeng; Wiest, Joachim; Rodenburg, Marleen; Roth, Adrian

    2016-01-01

    The recent advent of microphysiological systems - microfluidic biomimetic devices that aspire to emulate the biology of human tissues, organs and circulation in vitro - is envisaged to enable a global paradigm shift in drug development. An extraordinary US governmental initiative and various

  4. A high-throughput screening approach to discovering good forms of biologically inspired visual representation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas Pinto

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available While many models of biological object recognition share a common set of "broad-stroke" properties, the performance of any one model depends strongly on the choice of parameters in a particular instantiation of that model--e.g., the number of units per layer, the size of pooling kernels, exponents in normalization operations, etc. Since the number of such parameters (explicit or implicit is typically large and the computational cost of evaluating one particular parameter set is high, the space of possible model instantiations goes largely unexplored. Thus, when a model fails to approach the abilities of biological visual systems, we are left uncertain whether this failure is because we are missing a fundamental idea or because the correct "parts" have not been tuned correctly, assembled at sufficient scale, or provided with enough training. Here, we present a high-throughput approach to the exploration of such parameter sets, leveraging recent advances in stream processing hardware (high-end NVIDIA graphic cards and the PlayStation 3's IBM Cell Processor. In analogy to high-throughput screening approaches in molecular biology and genetics, we explored thousands of potential network architectures and parameter instantiations, screening those that show promising object recognition performance for further analysis. We show that this approach can yield significant, reproducible gains in performance across an array of basic object recognition tasks, consistently outperforming a variety of state-of-the-art purpose-built vision systems from the literature. As the scale of available computational power continues to expand, we argue that this approach has the potential to greatly accelerate progress in both artificial vision and our understanding of the computational underpinning of biological vision.

  5. A high-throughput screening approach to discovering good forms of biologically inspired visual representation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinto, Nicolas; Doukhan, David; DiCarlo, James J; Cox, David D

    2009-11-01

    While many models of biological object recognition share a common set of "broad-stroke" properties, the performance of any one model depends strongly on the choice of parameters in a particular instantiation of that model--e.g., the number of units per layer, the size of pooling kernels, exponents in normalization operations, etc. Since the number of such parameters (explicit or implicit) is typically large and the computational cost of evaluating one particular parameter set is high, the space of possible model instantiations goes largely unexplored. Thus, when a model fails to approach the abilities of biological visual systems, we are left uncertain whether this failure is because we are missing a fundamental idea or because the correct "parts" have not been tuned correctly, assembled at sufficient scale, or provided with enough training. Here, we present a high-throughput approach to the exploration of such parameter sets, leveraging recent advances in stream processing hardware (high-end NVIDIA graphic cards and the PlayStation 3's IBM Cell Processor). In analogy to high-throughput screening approaches in molecular biology and genetics, we explored thousands of potential network architectures and parameter instantiations, screening those that show promising object recognition performance for further analysis. We show that this approach can yield significant, reproducible gains in performance across an array of basic object recognition tasks, consistently outperforming a variety of state-of-the-art purpose-built vision systems from the literature. As the scale of available computational power continues to expand, we argue that this approach has the potential to greatly accelerate progress in both artificial vision and our understanding of the computational underpinning of biological vision.

  6. Robotics

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    netic induction to detect an object. The development of ... end effector, inclination of object, magnetic and electric fields, etc. The sensors described ... In the case of a robot, the various actuators and motors have to be modelled. The major ...

  7. The Robotic Scientist: Distilling Natural Laws from Experimental Data, from Cognitive Robotics to Computational Biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lipson, Hod [Cornell University

    2011-10-25

    Can machines discover analytical laws automatically? For centuries, scientists have attempted to identify and document analytical laws that underlie physical phenomena in nature. Despite the prevalence of computing power, the process of finding natural laws and their corresponding equations has resisted automation. A key challenge to finding analytic relations automatically is defining algorithmically what makes a correlation in observed data important and insightful. By seeking dynamical invariants and symmetries, we show how we can go from finding just predictive models to finding deeper conservation laws. We demonstrated this approach by automatically searching motion-tracking data captured from various physical systems, ranging from simple harmonic oscillators to chaotic double-pendula. Without any prior knowledge about physics, kinematics, or geometry, the algorithm discovered Hamiltonians, Lagrangians, and other laws of geometric and momentum conservation. The discovery rate accelerated as laws found for simpler systems were used to bootstrap explanations for more complex systems, gradually uncovering the “alphabet” used to describe those systems. Application to modeling physical and biological systems will be shown.

  8. The effect of shape on drag: a physics exercise inspired by biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fingerut, Jonathan; Johnson, Nicholas; Mongeau, Eric; Habdas, Piotr

    2017-07-01

    As part of a biomechanics course aimed at upper-division biology and physics majors, but applicable to a range of student learning levels, this laboratory exercise provides an insight into the effect of shape on hydrodynamic performance, as well an introduction to computer aided design (CAD) and 3D printing. Students use hydrodynamic modeling software and simple CAD programs to design a shape with the least amount of drag based on strategies gleaned from the study of natural forms. Students then print the shapes using a 3D printer and test their shapes against their classmates in a friendly competition. From this exercise, students gain a more intuitive sense of the challenges that organisms face when moving through fluid environments, the physical phenomena involved in moving through fluids at high Reynolds numbers and observe how and why certain morphologies, such as streamlining, are common answers to the challenge of swimming at high speeds.

  9. Biology-inspired Microphysiological System Approaches to Solve the Prediction Dilemma of Substance Testing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marx, Uwe; Andersson, Tommy B.; Bahinski, Anthony; Beilmann, Mario; Beken, Sonja; Cassee, Flemming R.; Cirit, Murat; Daneshian, Mardas; Fitzpatrick, Susan; Frey, Olivier; Gaertner, Claudia; Giese, Christoph; Griffith, Linda; Hartung, Thomas; Heringa, Minne B.; Hoeng, Julia; de Jong, Wim H.; Kojima, Hajime; Kuehnl, Jochen; Luch, Andreas; Maschmeyer, Ilka; Sakharov, Dmitry; Sips, Adrienne J. A. M.; Steger-Hartmann, Thomas; Tagle, Danilo A.; Tonevitsky, Alexander; Tralau, Tewes; Tsyb, Sergej; van de Stolpe, Anja; Vandebriel, Rob; Vulto, Paul; Wang, Jufeng; Wiest, Joachim; Rodenburg, Marleen; Roth, Adrian

    2017-01-01

    Summary The recent advent of microphysiological systems – microfluidic biomimetic devices that aspire to emulate the biology of human tissues, organs and circulation in vitro – is envisaged to enable a global paradigm shift in drug development. An extraordinary US governmental initiative and various dedicated research programs in Europe and Asia have led recently to the first cutting-edge achievements of human single-organ and multi-organ engineering based on microphysiological systems. The expectation is that test systems established on this basis would model various disease stages, and predict toxicity, immunogenicity, ADME profiles and treatment efficacy prior to clinical testing. Consequently, this technology could significantly affect the way drug substances are developed in the future. Furthermore, microphysiological system-based assays may revolutionize our current global programs of prioritization of hazard characterization for any new substances to be used, for example, in agriculture, food, ecosystems or cosmetics, thus, replacing laboratory animal models used currently. Thirty-five experts from academia, industry and regulatory bodies present here the results of an intensive workshop (held in June 2015, Berlin, Germany). They review the status quo of microphysiological systems available today against industry needs, and assess the broad variety of approaches with fit-for-purpose potential in the drug development cycle. Feasible technical solutions to reach the next levels of human biology in vitro are proposed. Furthermore, key organ-on-a-chip case studies, as well as various national and international programs are highlighted. Finally, a roadmap into the future is outlined, to allow for more predictive and regulatory-accepted substance testing on a global scale. PMID:27180100

  10. Assessment of Myoelectric Controller Performance and Kinematic Behavior of a Novel Soft Synergy-Inspired Robotic Hand for Prosthetic Applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fani, Simone; Bianchi, Matteo; Jain, Sonal; Pimenta Neto, José Simões; Boege, Scott; Grioli, Giorgio; Bicchi, Antonio; Santello, Marco

    2016-01-01

    Myoelectric artificial limbs can significantly advance the state of the art in prosthetics, since they can be used to control mechatronic devices through muscular activity in a way that mimics how the subjects used to activate their muscles before limb loss. However, surveys indicate that dissatisfaction with the functionality of terminal devices underlies the widespread abandonment of prostheses. We believe that one key factor to improve acceptability of prosthetic devices is to attain human likeness of prosthesis movements, a goal which is being pursued by research on social and human-robot interactions. Therefore, to reduce early abandonment of terminal devices, we propose that controllers should be designed so as to ensure effective task accomplishment in a natural fashion. In this work, we have analyzed and compared the performance of three types of myoelectric controller algorithms based on surface electromyography to control an underactuated and multi-degrees of freedom prosthetic hand, the SoftHand Pro. The goal of the present study was to identify the myoelectric algorithm that best mimics the native hand movements. As a preliminary step, we first quantified the repeatability of the SoftHand Pro finger movements and identified the electromyographic recording sites for able-bodied individuals with the highest signal-to-noise ratio from two pairs of muscles, i.e., flexor digitorum superficialis/extensor digitorum communis, and flexor carpi radialis/extensor carpi ulnaris. Able-bodied volunteers were then asked to execute reach-to-grasp movements, while electromyography signals were recorded from flexor digitorum superficialis/extensor digitorum communis as this was identified as the muscle pair characterized by high signal-to-noise ratio and intuitive control. Subsequently, we tested three myoelectric controllers that mapped electromyography signals to position of the SoftHand Pro. We found that a differential electromyography-to-position mapping ensured the

  11. A biologically inspired scale-space for illumination invariant feature detection

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vonikakis, Vasillios; Chrysostomou, Dimitrios; Kouskouridas, Rigas; Gasteratos, Antonios

    2013-01-01

    This paper presents a new illumination invariant operator, combining the nonlinear characteristics of biological center-surround cells with the classic difference of Gaussians operator. It specifically targets the underexposed image regions, exhibiting increased sensitivity to low contrast, while not affecting performance in the correctly exposed ones. The proposed operator can be used to create a scale-space, which in turn can be a part of a SIFT-based detector module. The main advantage of this illumination invariant scale-space is that, using just one global threshold, keypoints can be detected in both dark and bright image regions. In order to evaluate the degree of illumination invariance that the proposed, as well as other, existing, operators exhibit, a new benchmark dataset is introduced. It features a greater variety of imaging conditions, compared to existing databases, containing real scenes under various degrees and combinations of uniform and non-uniform illumination. Experimental results show that the proposed detector extracts a greater number of features, with a high level of repeatability, compared to other approaches, for both uniform and non-uniform illumination. This, along with its simple implementation, renders the proposed feature detector particularly appropriate for outdoor vision systems, working in environments under uncontrolled illumination conditions. (paper)

  12. Biologically inspired information theory: Adaptation through construction of external reality models by living systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakajima, Toshiyuki

    2015-12-01

    Higher animals act in the world using their external reality models to cope with the uncertain environment. Organisms that have not developed such information-processing organs may also have external reality models built in the form of their biochemical, physiological, and behavioral structures, acquired by natural selection through successful models constructed internally. Organisms subject to illusions would fail to survive in the material universe. How can organisms, or living systems in general, determine the external reality from within? This paper starts with a phenomenological model, in which the self constitutes a reality model developed through the mental processing of phenomena. Then, the it-from-bit concept is formalized using a simple mathematical model. For this formalization, my previous work on an algorithmic process is employed to constitute symbols referring to the external reality, called the inverse causality, with additional improvements to the previous work. Finally, as an extension of this model, the cognizers system model is employed to describe the self as one of many material entities in a world, each of which acts as a subject by responding to the surrounding entities. This model is used to propose a conceptual framework of information theory that can deal with both the qualitative (semantic) and quantitative aspects of the information involved in biological processes. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Bio-inspired vision

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Posch, C

    2012-01-01

    Nature still outperforms the most powerful computers in routine functions involving perception, sensing and actuation like vision, audition, and motion control, and is, most strikingly, orders of magnitude more energy-efficient than its artificial competitors. The reasons for the superior performance of biological systems are subject to diverse investigations, but it is clear that the form of hardware and the style of computation in nervous systems are fundamentally different from what is used in artificial synchronous information processing systems. Very generally speaking, biological neural systems rely on a large number of relatively simple, slow and unreliable processing elements and obtain performance and robustness from a massively parallel principle of operation and a high level of redundancy where the failure of single elements usually does not induce any observable system performance degradation. In the late 1980's, Carver Mead demonstrated that silicon VLSI technology can be employed in implementing ''neuromorphic'' circuits that mimic neural functions and fabricating building blocks that work like their biological role models. Neuromorphic systems, as the biological systems they model, are adaptive, fault-tolerant and scalable, and process information using energy-efficient, asynchronous, event-driven methods. In this paper, some basics of neuromorphic electronic engineering and its impact on recent developments in optical sensing and artificial vision are presented. It is demonstrated that bio-inspired vision systems have the potential to outperform conventional, frame-based vision acquisition and processing systems in many application fields and to establish new benchmarks in terms of redundancy suppression/data compression, dynamic range, temporal resolution and power efficiency to realize advanced functionality like 3D vision, object tracking, motor control, visual feedback loops, etc. in real-time. It is argued that future artificial vision systems

  14. Assessment of Myoelectric Controller Performance and Kinematic Behavior of a Novel Soft Synergy-inspired Robotic Hand for Prosthetic Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simone Fani

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Myoelectric-artificial limbs can significantly advance the state of the art in prosthetics, since they can be used to control mechatronic devices through muscular activity in a way that mimics how the subjects used to activate their muscles before limb loss. However, surveys indicate that dissatisfaction with the functionality of terminal devices underlies the widespread abandonment of prostheses. We believe that one key factor to improve acceptability of prosthetic devices is to attain human-likeness of prosthesis movements, a goal which is being pursued by research on social and human-robot interactions. Therefore, to reduce early abandonment of terminal devices, we propose that controllers should be designed such as to ensure effective task accomplishment in a natural fashion. In this work, we have analyzed and compared the performance of three types of myoelectric controller algorithms based on surface electromyography to control an under-actuated and multi-degrees of freedom prosthetic hand, the SoftHand Pro. The goal of the present study was to identify the myoelectric algorithm that best mimics the native hand movements. As a preliminary step, we first quantified the repeatability of the SoftHand Pro finger movements and identified the electromyographic recording sites for able-bodied individuals with the highest signal-to-noise ratio from two pairs of muscles, i.e. flexor digitorum superficialis/extensor digitorum communis, and flexor carpi radialis/extensor carpi ulnaris. Able-bodied volunteers were then asked to execute reach-to-grasp movements, while electromyography signals were recorded from flexor digitorum superficialis/extensor digitorum communis as this was identified as the muscle pair characterized by high signal-to-noise ratio and intuitive control. Subsequently, we tested three myoelectric controllers that mapped electromyography signals to position of the SoftHand Pro. We found that a differential electromyography

  15. Emotion Attribution to a Non-Humanoid Robot in Different Social Situations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lakatos, Gabriella; Gácsi, Márta; Konok, Veronika; Brúder, Ildikó; Bereczky, Boróka; Korondi, Péter; Miklósi, Ádám

    2014-01-01

    In the last few years there was an increasing interest in building companion robots that interact in a socially acceptable way with humans. In order to interact in a meaningful way a robot has to convey intentionality and emotions of some sort in order to increase believability. We suggest that human-robot interaction should be considered as a specific form of inter-specific interaction and that human–animal interaction can provide a useful biological model for designing social robots. Dogs can provide a promising biological model since during the domestication process dogs were able to adapt to the human environment and to participate in complex social interactions. In this observational study we propose to design emotionally expressive behaviour of robots using the behaviour of dogs as inspiration and to test these dog-inspired robots with humans in inter-specific context. In two experiments (wizard-of-oz scenarios) we examined humans' ability to recognize two basic and a secondary emotion expressed by a robot. In Experiment 1 we provided our companion robot with two kinds of emotional behaviour (“happiness” and “fear”), and studied whether people attribute the appropriate emotion to the robot, and interact with it accordingly. In Experiment 2 we investigated whether participants tend to attribute guilty behaviour to a robot in a relevant context by examining whether relying on the robot's greeting behaviour human participants can detect if the robot transgressed a predetermined rule. Results of Experiment 1 showed that people readily attribute emotions to a social robot and interact with it in accordance with the expressed emotional behaviour. Results of Experiment 2 showed that people are able to recognize if the robot transgressed on the basis of its greeting behaviour. In summary, our findings showed that dog-inspired behaviour is a suitable medium for making people attribute emotional states to a non-humanoid robot. PMID:25551218

  16. Emotion attribution to a non-humanoid robot in different social situations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriella Lakatos

    Full Text Available In the last few years there was an increasing interest in building companion robots that interact in a socially acceptable way with humans. In order to interact in a meaningful way a robot has to convey intentionality and emotions of some sort in order to increase believability. We suggest that human-robot interaction should be considered as a specific form of inter-specific interaction and that human-animal interaction can provide a useful biological model for designing social robots. Dogs can provide a promising biological model since during the domestication process dogs were able to adapt to the human environment and to participate in complex social interactions. In this observational study we propose to design emotionally expressive behaviour of robots using the behaviour of dogs as inspiration and to test these dog-inspired robots with humans in inter-specific context. In two experiments (wizard-of-oz scenarios we examined humans' ability to recognize two basic and a secondary emotion expressed by a robot. In Experiment 1 we provided our companion robot with two kinds of emotional behaviour ("happiness" and "fear", and studied whether people attribute the appropriate emotion to the robot, and interact with it accordingly. In Experiment 2 we investigated whether participants tend to attribute guilty behaviour to a robot in a relevant context by examining whether relying on the robot's greeting behaviour human participants can detect if the robot transgressed a predetermined rule. Results of Experiment 1 showed that people readily attribute emotions to a social robot and interact with it in accordance with the expressed emotional behaviour. Results of Experiment 2 showed that people are able to recognize if the robot transgressed on the basis of its greeting behaviour. In summary, our findings showed that dog-inspired behaviour is a suitable medium for making people attribute emotional states to a non-humanoid robot.

  17. Biologically inspired flexible quasi-single-mode random laser: An integration of Pieris canidia butterfly wing and semiconductors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Cih-Su; Chang, Tsung-Yuan; Lin, Tai-Yuan; Chen, Yang-Fang

    2014-10-01

    Quasi-periodic structures of natural biomaterial membranes have great potentials to serve as resonance cavities to generate ecological friendly optoelectronic devices with low cost. To achieve the first attempt for the illustration of the underlying principle, the Pieris canidia butterfly wing was embedded with ZnO nanoparticles. Quite interestingly, it is found that the bio-inspired quasi-single-mode random laser can be achieved by the assistance of the skeleton of the membrane, in which ZnO nanoparticles act as emitting gain media. Such unique characteristics can be interpreted well by the Fabry-Perot resonance existing in the window-like quasi-periodic structure of butterfly wing. Due to the inherently promising flexibility of butterfly wing membrane, the laser action can still be maintained during the bending process. Our demonstrated approach not only indicates that the natural biological structures can provide effective scattering feedbacks but also pave a new avenue towards designing bio-controlled photonic devices.

  18. Biologically inspired flexible quasi-single-mode random laser: an integration of Pieris canidia butterfly wing and semiconductors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Cih-Su; Chang, Tsung-Yuan; Lin, Tai-Yuan; Chen, Yang-Fang

    2014-10-23

    Quasi-periodic structures of natural biomaterial membranes have great potentials to serve as resonance cavities to generate ecological friendly optoelectronic devices with low cost. To achieve the first attempt for the illustration of the underlying principle, the Pieris canidia butterfly wing was embedded with ZnO nanoparticles. Quite interestingly, it is found that the bio-inspired quasi-single-mode random laser can be achieved by the assistance of the skeleton of the membrane, in which ZnO nanoparticles act as emitting gain media. Such unique characteristics can be interpreted well by the Fabry-Perot resonance existing in the window-like quasi-periodic structure of butterfly wing. Due to the inherently promising flexibility of butterfly wing membrane, the laser action can still be maintained during the bending process. Our demonstrated approach not only indicates that the natural biological structures can provide effective scattering feedbacks but also pave a new avenue towards designing bio-controlled photonic devices.

  19. Writing Inspired

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tischhauser, Karen

    2015-01-01

    Students need inspiration to write. Assigning is not teaching. In order to inspire students to write fiction worth reading, teachers must take them through the process of writing. Physical objects inspire good writing with depth. In this article, the reader will be taken through the process of inspiring young writers through the use of boxes.…

  20. Biologically-Inspired Spike-Based Automatic Speech Recognition of Isolated Digits Over a Reproducing Kernel Hilbert Space

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kan Li

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a novel real-time dynamic framework for quantifying time-series structure in spoken words using spikes. Audio signals are converted into multi-channel spike trains using a biologically-inspired leaky integrate-and-fire (LIF spike generator. These spike trains are mapped into a function space of infinite dimension, i.e., a Reproducing Kernel Hilbert Space (RKHS using point-process kernels, where a state-space model learns the dynamics of the multidimensional spike input using gradient descent learning. This kernelized recurrent system is very parsimonious and achieves the necessary memory depth via feedback of its internal states when trained discriminatively, utilizing the full context of the phoneme sequence. A main advantage of modeling nonlinear dynamics using state-space trajectories in the RKHS is that it imposes no restriction on the relationship between the exogenous input and its internal state. We are free to choose the input representation with an appropriate kernel, and changing the kernel does not impact the system nor the learning algorithm. Moreover, we show that this novel framework can outperform both traditional hidden Markov model (HMM speech processing as well as neuromorphic implementations based on spiking neural network (SNN, yielding accurate and ultra-low power word spotters. As a proof of concept, we demonstrate its capabilities using the benchmark TI-46 digit corpus for isolated-word automatic speech recognition (ASR or keyword spotting. Compared to HMM using Mel-frequency cepstral coefficient (MFCC front-end without time-derivatives, our MFCC-KAARMA offered improved performance. For spike-train front-end, spike-KAARMA also outperformed state-of-the-art SNN solutions. Furthermore, compared to MFCCs, spike trains provided enhanced noise robustness in certain low signal-to-noise ratio (SNR regime.

  1. Biologically-Inspired Spike-Based Automatic Speech Recognition of Isolated Digits Over a Reproducing Kernel Hilbert Space.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Kan; Príncipe, José C

    2018-01-01

    This paper presents a novel real-time dynamic framework for quantifying time-series structure in spoken words using spikes. Audio signals are converted into multi-channel spike trains using a biologically-inspired leaky integrate-and-fire (LIF) spike generator. These spike trains are mapped into a function space of infinite dimension, i.e., a Reproducing Kernel Hilbert Space (RKHS) using point-process kernels, where a state-space model learns the dynamics of the multidimensional spike input using gradient descent learning. This kernelized recurrent system is very parsimonious and achieves the necessary memory depth via feedback of its internal states when trained discriminatively, utilizing the full context of the phoneme sequence. A main advantage of modeling nonlinear dynamics using state-space trajectories in the RKHS is that it imposes no restriction on the relationship between the exogenous input and its internal state. We are free to choose the input representation with an appropriate kernel, and changing the kernel does not impact the system nor the learning algorithm. Moreover, we show that this novel framework can outperform both traditional hidden Markov model (HMM) speech processing as well as neuromorphic implementations based on spiking neural network (SNN), yielding accurate and ultra-low power word spotters. As a proof of concept, we demonstrate its capabilities using the benchmark TI-46 digit corpus for isolated-word automatic speech recognition (ASR) or keyword spotting. Compared to HMM using Mel-frequency cepstral coefficient (MFCC) front-end without time-derivatives, our MFCC-KAARMA offered improved performance. For spike-train front-end, spike-KAARMA also outperformed state-of-the-art SNN solutions. Furthermore, compared to MFCCs, spike trains provided enhanced noise robustness in certain low signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) regime.

  2. A biologically-inspired multi-joint soft exosuit that can reduce the energy cost of loaded walking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panizzolo, Fausto A; Galiana, Ignacio; Asbeck, Alan T; Siviy, Christopher; Schmidt, Kai; Holt, Kenneth G; Walsh, Conor J

    2016-05-12

    Carrying load alters normal walking, imposes additional stress to the musculoskeletal system, and results in an increase in energy consumption and a consequent earlier onset of fatigue. This phenomenon is largely due to increased work requirements in lower extremity joints, in turn requiring higher muscle activation. The aim of this work was to assess the biomechanical and physiological effects of a multi-joint soft exosuit that applies assistive torques to the biological hip and ankle joints during loaded walking. The exosuit was evaluated under three conditions: powered (EXO_ON), unpowered (EXO_OFF) and unpowered removing the equivalent mass of the device (EXO_OFF_EMR). Seven participants walked on an instrumented split-belt treadmill and carried a load equivalent to 30 % their body mass. We assessed their metabolic cost of walking, kinetics, kinematics, and lower limb muscle activation using a portable gas analysis system, motion capture system, and surface electromyography. Our results showed that the exosuit could deliver controlled forces to a wearer. Net metabolic power in the EXO_ON condition (7.5 ± 0.6 W kg(-1)) was 7.3 ± 5.0 % and 14.2 ± 6.1 % lower than in the EXO_OFF_EMR condition (7.9 ± 0.8 W kg(-1); p = 0.027) and in the EXO_OFF condition (8.5 ± 0.9 W kg(-1); p = 0.005), respectively. The exosuit also reduced the total joint positive biological work (sum of hip, knee and ankle) when comparing the EXO_ON condition (1.06 ± 0.16 J kg(-1)) with respect to the EXO_OFF condition (1.28 ± 0.26 J kg(-1); p = 0.020) and to the EXO_OFF_EMR condition (1.22 ± 0.21 J kg(-1); p = 0.007). The results of the present work demonstrate for the first time that a soft wearable robot can improve walking economy. These findings pave the way for future assistive devices that may enhance or restore gait in other applications.

  3. Zebrafish (Danio rerio) behavioural response to bioinspired robotic fish and mosquitofish (Gambusia affinis)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Polverino, Giovanni; Porfiri, Maurizio

    2013-01-01

    The field of ethorobotics holds promise in aiding fundamental research in animal behaviour, whereby it affords fully controllable and easily reproducible experimental tools. Most of the current ethorobotics studies are focused on the behavioural response of a selected target species as it interacts with a biologically-inspired robot in controlled laboratory conditions. In this work, we first explore the interactions between two social fish species and a robotic fish, whose design is inspired by salient visual features of one of the species. Specifically, this study investigates the behavioural response of small shoals of zebrafish interacting with a zebrafish-inspired robotic fish and small shoals of mosquitofish in a basic ecological context. Our results demonstrate that the robotic fish differentially influences the behaviour of the two species by consistently attracting zebrafish, while repelling mosquitofish. This selective behavioural control is successful in spatially isolating the two species, which would otherwise exhibit prey–predator interactions, with mosquitofish attacking zebrafish. (communication)

  4. Inspired Responses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steele, Carol Frederick

    2011-01-01

    In terms of teacher quality, Steele believes the best teachers have reached a stage she terms inspired, and that teachers move progressively through the stages of unaware, aware, and capable until the most reflective teachers finally reach the inspired level. Inspired teachers have a wide repertoire of teaching and class management techniques and…

  5. Robots for Astrobiology!

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boston, Penelope J.

    2016-01-01

    The search for life and its study is known as astrobiology. Conducting that search on other planets in our Solar System is a major goal of NASA and other space agencies, and a driving passion of the community of scientists and engineers around the world. We practice for that search in many ways, from exploring and studying extreme environments on Earth, to developing robots to go to other planets and help us look for any possible life that may be there or may have been there in the past. The unique challenges of space exploration make collaborations between robots and humans essential. The products of those collaborations will be novel and driven by the features of wholly new environments. For space and planetary environments that are intolerable for humans or where humans present an unacceptable risk to possible biologically sensitive sites, autonomous robots or telepresence offer excellent choices. The search for life signs on Mars fits within this category, especially in advance of human landed missions there, but also as assistants and tools once humans reach the Red Planet. For planetary destinations where we do not envision humans ever going in person, like bitterly cold icy moons, or ocean worlds with thick ice roofs that essentially make them planetary-sized ice caves, we will rely on robots alone to visit those environments for us and enable us to explore and understand any life that we may find there. Current generation robots are not quite ready for some of the tasks that we need them to do, so there are many opportunities for roboticists of the future to advance novel types of mobility, autonomy, and bio-inspired robotic designs to help us accomplish our astrobiological goals. We see an exciting partnership between robotics and astrobiology continually strengthening as we jointly pursue the quest to find extraterrestrial life.

  6. Towards a synergy framework across neuroscience and robotics: Lessons learned and open questions. Reply to comments on: "Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santello, Marco; Bianchi, Matteo; Gabiccini, Marco; Ricciardi, Emiliano; Salvietti, Gionata; Prattichizzo, Domenico; Ernst, Marc; Moscatelli, Alessandro; Jorntell, Henrik; Kappers, Astrid M. L.; Kyriakopoulos, Kostas; Schaeffer, Alin Abu; Castellini, Claudio; Bicchi, Antonio

    2016-07-01

    We would like to thank all commentators for their insightful commentaries. Thanks to their diverse and complementary expertise in neuroscience and robotics, the commentators have provided us with the opportunity to further discuss state-of-the-art and gaps in the integration of neuroscience and robotics reviewed in our article. We organized our reply in two sections that capture the main points of all commentaries [1-9]: (1) Advantages and limitations of the synergy approach in neuroscience and robotics, and (2) Learning and role of sensory feedback in biological and robotics synergies.

  7. Virtual Agonist-antagonist Mechanisms Produce Biological Muscle-like Functions: An Application for Robot Joint Control

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Xiong, Xiaofeng; Wörgötter, Florentin; Manoonpong, Poramate

    2014-01-01

    Purpose – Biological muscles of animals have a surprising variety of functions, i.e., struts, springs, and brakes. According to this, the purpose of this paper is to apply virtual agonist-antagonist mechanisms to robot joint control allowing for muscle-like functions and variably compliant joint......, variably compliant joint motions can be produced without mechanically bulky and complex mechanisms or complex force/toque sensing at each joint. Moreover, through tuning the damping coefficient of the VAAM, the functions of the VAAM are comparable to biological muscles. Originality/value – The model (i.......e., VAAM) provides a way forward to emulate muscle-like functions that are comparable to those found in physiological experiments of biological muscles. Based on these muscle-like functions, the robotic joints can easily achieve variable compliance that does not require complex physical components...

  8. The Microphenotron: a robotic miniaturized plant phenotyping platform with diverse applications in chemical biology

    KAUST Repository

    Burrell, Thomas

    2017-03-01

    Background Chemical genetics provides a powerful alternative to conventional genetics for understanding gene function. However, its application to plants has been limited by the lack of a technology that allows detailed phenotyping of whole-seedling development in the context of a high-throughput chemical screen. We have therefore sought to develop an automated micro-phenotyping platform that would allow both root and shoot development to be monitored under conditions where the phenotypic effects of large numbers of small molecules can be assessed. Results The ‘Microphenotron’ platform uses 96-well microtitre plates to deliver chemical treatments to seedlings of Arabidopsis thaliana L. and is based around four components: (a) the ‘Phytostrip’, a novel seedling growth device that enables chemical treatments to be combined with the automated capture of images of developing roots and shoots; (b) an illuminated robotic platform that uses a commercially available robotic manipulator to capture images of developing shoots and roots; (c) software to control the sequence of robotic movements and integrate these with the image capture process; (d) purpose-made image analysis software for automated extraction of quantitative phenotypic data. Imaging of each plate (representing 80 separate assays) takes 4 min and can easily be performed daily for time-course studies. As currently configured, the Microphenotron has a capacity of 54 microtitre plates in a growth room footprint of 2.1 m2, giving a potential throughput of up to 4320 chemical treatments in a typical 10 days experiment. The Microphenotron has been validated by using it to screen a collection of 800 natural compounds for qualitative effects on root development and to perform a quantitative analysis of the effects of a range of concentrations of nitrate and ammonium on seedling development. Conclusions The Microphenotron is an automated screening platform that for the first time is able to combine large

  9. Autonomous undulatory serpentine locomotion utilizing body dynamics of a fluidic soft robot

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Onal, Cagdas D; Rus, Daniela

    2013-01-01

    Soft robotics offers the unique promise of creating inherently safe and adaptive systems. These systems bring man-made machines closer to the natural capabilities of biological systems. An important requirement to enable self-contained soft mobile robots is an on-board power source. In this paper, we present an approach to create a bio-inspired soft robotic snake that can undulate in a similar way to its biological counterpart using pressure for actuation power, without human intervention. With this approach, we develop an autonomous soft snake robot with on-board actuation, power, computation and control capabilities. The robot consists of four bidirectional fluidic elastomer actuators in series to create a traveling curvature wave from head to tail along its body. Passive wheels between segments generate the necessary frictional anisotropy for forward locomotion. It takes 14 h to build the soft robotic snake, which can attain an average locomotion speed of 19 mm s −1 . (paper)

  10. Bio-Inspired Optimal Control Framework to Generate Walking Motions for the Humanoid Robot iCub Using Whole Body Models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yue Hu

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Bipedal locomotion remains one of the major open challenges of humanoid robotics. The common approaches are based on simple reduced model dynamics to generate walking trajectories, often neglecting the whole-body dynamics of the robots. As motions in nature are often considered as optimal with respect to certain criteria, in this work, we present an optimal control-based approach that allows us to generate optimized walking motions using a precise whole-body dynamic model of the robot, in contrast with the common approaches. The optimal control problem is formulated to minimize a set of desired objective functions with respect to physical constraints of the robot and contact constraints of the walking phases; the problem is then solved with a direct multiple shooting method. We apply the formulation with combinations of different objective criteria to the model of a reduced version of the iCub humanoid robot of 15 internal DOF. The obtained trajectories are executed on the real robot, and we carry out a discussion on the differences between the outcomes of this approach with the classic approaches.

  11. In-channel experiments on vertical swimming with bacteria-like robots

    OpenAIRE

    Tabak, Ahmet Fatih; Yeşilyurt, Serhat; Yesilyurt, Serhat

    2013-01-01

    Bio-inspired micro-robots are of great importance as to implement versatile microsystems for a variety of in vivo and in vitro applications in medicine and biology. Accurate models are necessary to understand the swimming and rigidbody dynamics of such systems. In this study, a series of experiments are conducted with a two-link cm-scale bioinspired robot moving vertically without a tether, in siliconefilled narrow cylindrical glass channels. Swimming velocities are obtained for a set of v...

  12. Robots and cyborgs: to be or to have a body?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palese, Emma

    2012-06-01

    Starting with service robotics and industrial robotics, this paper aims to suggest philosophical reflections about the relationship between body and machine, between man and technology in our contemporary world. From the massive use of the cell phone to the robots which apparently "feel" and show emotions like humans do. From the wearable exoskeleton to the prototype reproducing the artificial sense of touch, technological progress explodes to the extent of embodying itself in our nakedness. Robotics, indeed, is inspired by biology in order to develop a new kind of technology affecting human life. This is a bio-robotic approach, which is fulfilled in the figure of the cyborg and consequently in the loss of human nature. Today, humans have reached the possibility to modify and create their own body following their personal desires. But what is the limit of this achievement? For this reason, we all must question ourselves whether we have or whether we are a body.

  13. Bio-inspired networking

    CERN Document Server

    Câmara, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    Bio-inspired techniques are based on principles, or models, of biological systems. In general, natural systems present remarkable capabilities of resilience and adaptability. In this book, we explore how bio-inspired methods can solve different problems linked to computer networks. Future networks are expected to be autonomous, scalable and adaptive. During millions of years of evolution, nature has developed a number of different systems that present these and other characteristics required for the next generation networks. Indeed, a series of bio-inspired methods have been successfully used to solve the most diverse problems linked to computer networks. This book presents some of these techniques from a theoretical and practical point of view. Discusses the key concepts of bio-inspired networking to aid you in finding efficient networking solutions Delivers examples of techniques both in theoretical concepts and practical applications Helps you apply nature's dynamic resource and task management to your co...

  14. Robotics in scansorial environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Autumn, Kellar; Buehler, Martin; Cutkosky, Mark; Fearing, Ronald; Full, Robert J.; Goldman, Daniel; Groff, Richard; Provancher, William; Rizzi, Alfred A.; Saranli, Uluc; Saunders, Aaron; Koditschek, Daniel E.

    2005-05-01

    We review a large multidisciplinary effort to develop a family of autonomous robots capable of rapid, agile maneuvers in and around natural and artificial vertical terrains such as walls, cliffs, caves, trees and rubble. Our robot designs are inspired by (but not direct copies of) biological climbers such as cockroaches, geckos, and squirrels. We are incorporating advanced materials (e.g., synthetic gecko hairs) into these designs and fabricating them using state of the art rapid prototyping techniques (e.g., shape deposition manufacturing) that permit multiple iterations of design and testing with an effective integration path for the novel materials and components. We are developing novel motion control techniques to support dexterous climbing behaviors that are inspired by neuroethological studies of animals and descended from earlier frameworks that have proven analytically tractable and empirically sound. Our near term behavioral targets call for vertical climbing on soft (e.g., bark) or rough surfaces and for ascents on smooth, hard steep inclines (e.g., 60 degree slopes on metal or glass sheets) at one body length per second.

  15. Action understanding and imitation learning in a robot-human task

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Erlhagen, W.; Mukovskiy, A.; Bicho, E.; Panin, G.; Kiss, C.; Knoll, A.; Schie, H.T. van; Bekkering, H.

    2005-01-01

    We report results of an interdisciplinary project which aims at endowing a real robot system with the capacity for learning by goal-directed imitation. The control architecture is biologically inspired as it reflects recent experimental findings in action observation/execution studies. We test its

  16. Accelerating Inspire

    CERN Document Server

    AUTHOR|(CDS)2266999

    2017-01-01

    CERN has been involved in the dissemination of scientific results since its early days and has continuously updated the distribution channels. Currently, Inspire hosts catalogues of articles, authors, institutions, conferences, jobs, experiments, journals and more. Successful orientation among this amount of data requires comprehensive linking between the content. Inspire has lacked a system for linking experiments and articles together based on which accelerator they were conducted at. The purpose of this project has been to create such a system. Records for 156 accelerators were created and all 2913 experiments on Inspire were given corresponding MARC tags. Records of 18404 accelerator physics related bibliographic entries were also tagged with corresponding accelerator tags. Finally, as a part of the endeavour to broaden CERN's presence on Wikipedia, existing Wikipedia articles of accelerators were updated with short descriptions and links to Inspire. In total, 86 Wikipedia articles were updated. This repo...

  17. Automated Sample Exchange Robots for the Structural Biology Beam Lines at the Photon Factory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hiraki, Masahiko; Watanabe, Shokei; Yamada, Yusuke; Matsugaki, Naohiro; Igarashi, Noriyuki; Gaponov, Yurii; Wakatsuki, Soichi

    2007-01-01

    We are now developing automated sample exchange robots for high-throughput protein crystallographic experiments for onsite use at synchrotron beam lines. It is part of the fully automated robotics systems being developed at the Photon Factory, for the purposes of protein crystallization, monitoring crystal growth, harvesting and freezing crystals, mounting the crystals inside a hutch and for data collection. We have already installed the sample exchange robots based on the SSRL automated mounting system at our insertion device beam lines BL-5A and AR-NW12A at the Photon Factory. In order to reduce the time required for sample exchange further, a prototype of a double-tonged system was developed. As a result of preliminary experiments with double-tonged robots, the sample exchange time was successfully reduced from 70 seconds to 10 seconds with the exception of the time required for pre-cooling and warming up the tongs

  18. The Microphenotron: a robotic miniaturized plant phenotyping platform with diverse applications in chemical biology

    KAUST Repository

    Burrell, Thomas; Fozard, Susan; Holroyd, Geoff H.; French, Andrew P.; Pound, Michael P.; Bigley, Christopher J.; James Taylor, C.; Forde, Brian G.

    2017-01-01

    of developing shoots and roots; (c) software to control the sequence of robotic movements and integrate these with the image capture process; (d) purpose-made image analysis software for automated extraction of quantitative phenotypic data. Imaging of each plate

  19. Thermal impact of migrating birds' wing color on their flight performance: Possibility of new generation of biologically inspired drones.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hassanalian, M; Abdelmoula, H; Ben Ayed, S; Abdelkefi, A

    2017-05-01

    The thermal impact of the birds' color on their flight performance are investigated. In most of the large migrating birds, the top of their wings is black. Considering this natural phenomenon in the migrating birds, such as albatross, a thermal analysis of the boundary layer of their wings is performed during the year depending on the solar insulation. It is shown that the temperature difference between the bright and dark colored top wing surface is around 10°C. The dark color on the top of the wing increases the temperature of the boundary layer over the wing which consequently reduces the skin drag force over the wing. This reduction in the drag force can be considered as one of the effective factors for long endurance of these migrating birds. This research should lead to improved designs of the drones by applying the inspired colors which can help drones increase their endurance. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Modeling biology with HDL languages: a first step toward a genetic design automation tool inspired from microelectronics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gendrault, Yves; Madec, Morgan; Lallement, Christophe; Haiech, Jacques

    2014-04-01

    Nowadays, synthetic biology is a hot research topic. Each day, progresses are made to improve the complexity of artificial biological functions in order to tend to complex biodevices and biosystems. Up to now, these systems are handmade by bioengineers, which require strong technical skills and leads to nonreusable development. Besides, scientific fields that share the same design approach, such as microelectronics, have already overcome several issues and designers succeed in building extremely complex systems with many evolved functions. On the other hand, in systems engineering and more specifically in microelectronics, the development of the domain has been promoted by both the improvement of technological processes and electronic design automation tools. The work presented in this paper paves the way for the adaptation of microelectronics design tools to synthetic biology. Considering the similarities and differences between the synthetic biology and microelectronics, the milestones of this adaptation are described. The first one concerns the modeling of biological mechanisms. To do so, a new formalism is proposed, based on an extension of the generalized Kirchhoff laws to biology. This way, a description of all biological mechanisms can be made with languages widely used in microelectronics. Our approach is therefore successfully validated on specific examples drawn from the literature.

  1. Control of complex physically simulated robot groups

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brogan, David C.

    2001-10-01

    Actuated systems such as robots take many forms and sizes but each requires solving the difficult task of utilizing available control inputs to accomplish desired system performance. Coordinated groups of robots provide the opportunity to accomplish more complex tasks, to adapt to changing environmental conditions, and to survive individual failures. Similarly, groups of simulated robots, represented as graphical characters, can test the design of experimental scenarios and provide autonomous interactive counterparts for video games. The complexity of writing control algorithms for these groups currently hinders their use. A combination of biologically inspired heuristics, search strategies, and optimization techniques serve to reduce the complexity of controlling these real and simulated characters and to provide computationally feasible solutions.

  2. Manufacturing and Evaluation of a Biologically Inspired Engineered MAV Wing Compared to the Manduca Sexta Wing Under Simulated Flapping Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-03-24

    and tested under simplified flapping conditions by analyzing ‘frozen’ digital images of the de - formed wing by methods of photogrammetry. This... Rocker System to Biological Flapping Mechanism . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49 2.6 PhotoModeler Methods . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55 2.7 A Word on...126 4.5.3 Residual Calculation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 127 4.5.4 Orientation Angle Determination (Torsional De

  3. Bio-Inspired Design and Kinematic Analysis of Dung Beetle-Like Legs

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aditya, Sai Krishna Venkata; Ignasov, Jevgeni; Filonenko, Konstantin

    2017-01-01

    The African dung beetle Scarabaeus galenus can use its front legs to walk and manipulate or form a dung ball. The interesting multifunctional legs have not been fully investigated or even used as inspiration for robot leg design. Thus, in this paper, we present the development of real dung beetle......-like front legs based on biological investigation. As a result, each leg consists of three main segments which were built using 3D printing. The segments were combined with in total four active DOFs in order to mimic locomotion and object manipulation of the beetle. Kinematics analysis of the leg was also...... performed to identify its workspace as well as to design its trajectory. To this end, the study contributes not only novel multifunctional robotic legs but also the methodology of the bio-inspired leg design....

  4. MIAMI cells embedded within a biologically-inspired construct promote recovery in a mouse model of peripheral vascular disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grau-Monge, Cristina; Delcroix, Gaëtan J.-R; Bonnin-Marquez, Andrea; Valdes, Mike; Awadallah, Ead Lewis Mazen; Quevedo, Daniel F.; Armour, Maxime R.; Montero, Ramon B.; Schiller, Paul C.; Andreopoulos, Fotios M.; D’Ippolito, Gianluca

    2017-01-01

    Peripheral vascular disease is one of the major vascular complications in individuals suffering from diabetes and in the elderly that is associated with significant burden in terms of morbidity and mortality. Stem cell therapy is being tested as an attractive alternative to traditional surgery to prevent and treat this disorder. The goal of this study was to enhance the protective and reparative potential of marrow-isolated adult multilineage inducible (MIAMI) cells by incorporating them within a bio-inspired construct (BIC) made of 2 layers of gelatin B electrospun nanofibers. We hypothesized that the BIC would enhance MIAMI cell survival and engraftment, ultimately leading to a better functional recovery of the injured limb in our mouse model of critical limb ischemia compared to MIAMI cells used alone. Our study demonstrated that MIAMI cell-seeded BIC resulted in a wide range of positive outcomes with an almost full recovery of blood flow in the injured limb, thereby limiting the extent of ischemia and necrosis. Functional recovery was also the greatest when MIAMI cells were combined with BICs, compared to MIAMI cells alone or BICs in the absence of cells. Histology was performed 28 days after grafting the animals to explore the mechanisms at the source of these positive outcomes. We observed that our critical limb ischemia model induces an extensive loss of muscular fibers that are replaced by intermuscular adipose tissue (IMAT), together with a highly disorganized vascular structure. The use of MIAMI cells-seeded BIC prevented IMAT infiltration with some clear evidence of muscular fibers regeneration. PMID:28211362

  5. Learning Spatial Object Localization from Vision on a Humanoid Robot

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jürgen Leitner

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available We present a combined machine learning and computer vision approach for robots to localize objects. It allows our iCub humanoid to quickly learn to provide accurate 3D position estimates (in the centimetre range of objects seen. Biologically inspired approaches, such as Artificial Neural Networks (ANN and Genetic Programming (GP, are trained to provide these position estimates using the two cameras and the joint encoder readings. No camera calibration or explicit knowledge of the robot's kinematic model is needed. We find that ANN and GP are not just faster and have lower complexity than traditional techniques, but also learn without the need for extensive calibration procedures. In addition, the approach is localizing objects robustly, when placed in the robot's workspace at arbitrary positions, even while the robot is moving its torso, head and eyes.

  6. Progress toward EAP actuators for biomimetic social robots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanson, D.

    2013-04-01

    Social robotics and artificial intelligence have progressed steadily in recent years, appearing in a variety of useful applications and products as well as breakthrough research. However, limitations in conventional motors continue to limit the possibilities of bio-inspired robotics. Such motors are needed for locomotion, grasping and manipulation, and social expressions and gestures. EAP actuators, being more like biological muscle in key regards, could revolutionize the hardware for such robots, if made robust, powerful, and manufacturable at reasonable prices. The author presents a survey of the progress and opportunities for EAP actuators in these fields, and discusses the latest work of his team in developing and manufacturing social robots that could benefit from EAP actuators.

  7. A Reconfigurable and Biologically Inspired Paradigm for Computation Using Network-On-Chip and Spiking Neural Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jim Harkin

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available FPGA devices have emerged as a popular platform for the rapid prototyping of biological Spiking Neural Networks (SNNs applications, offering the key requirement of reconfigurability. However, FPGAs do not efficiently realise the biologically plausible neuron and synaptic models of SNNs, and current FPGA routing structures cannot accommodate the high levels of interneuron connectivity inherent in complex SNNs. This paper highlights and discusses the current challenges of implementing scalable SNNs on reconfigurable FPGAs. The paper proposes a novel field programmable neural network architecture (EMBRACE, incorporating low-power analogue spiking neurons, interconnected using a Network-on-Chip architecture. Results on the evaluation of the EMBRACE architecture using the XOR benchmark problem are presented, and the performance of the architecture is discussed. The paper also discusses the adaptability of the EMBRACE architecture in supporting fault tolerant computing.

  8. The RiSE climbing robot: body and leg design

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saunders, A.; Goldman, D. I.; Full, R. J.; Buehler, M.

    2006-05-01

    The RiSE robot is a biologically inspired, six legged climbing robot, designed for general mobility in scansorial (vertical walls, horizontal ledges, ground level) environments. It exhibits ground reaction forces that are similar to animal climbers and does not rely on suction, magnets or other surface-dependent specializations to achieve adhesion and shear force. We describe RiSE's body and leg design as well as its electromechanical, communications and computational infrastructure. We review design iterations that enable RiSE to climb 90° carpeted, cork covered and (a growing range of) stucco surfaces in the quasi-static regime.

  9. Design and construction of a first-generation high-throughput integrated robotic molecular biology platform for bioenergy applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Stephen R; Butt, Tauseef R; Bartolett, Scott; Riedmuller, Steven B; Farrelly, Philip

    2011-08-01

    The molecular biological techniques for plasmid-based assembly and cloning of gene open reading frames are essential for elucidating the function of the proteins encoded by the genes. High-throughput integrated robotic molecular biology platforms that have the capacity to rapidly clone and express heterologous gene open reading frames in bacteria and yeast and to screen large numbers of expressed proteins for optimized function are an important technology for improving microbial strains for biofuel production. The process involves the production of full-length complementary DNA libraries as a source of plasmid-based clones to express the desired proteins in active form for determination of their functions. Proteins that were identified by high-throughput screening as having desired characteristics are overexpressed in microbes to enable them to perform functions that will allow more cost-effective and sustainable production of biofuels. Because the plasmid libraries are composed of several thousand unique genes, automation of the process is essential. This review describes the design and implementation of an automated integrated programmable robotic workcell capable of producing complementary DNA libraries, colony picking, isolating plasmid DNA, transforming yeast and bacteria, expressing protein, and performing appropriate functional assays. These operations will allow tailoring microbial strains to use renewable feedstocks for production of biofuels, bioderived chemicals, fertilizers, and other coproducts for profitable and sustainable biorefineries. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  10. Smart Nacre-inspired Nanocomposites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Jingsong; Cheng, Qunfeng

    2018-03-15

    Nacre-inspired nanocomposites with excellent mechanical properties have achieved remarkable attention in the past decades. The high performance of nacre-inspired nanocomposites is a good basis for the further application of smart devices. Recently, some smart nanocomposites inspired by nacre have demonstrated good mechanical properties as well as effective and stable stimuli-responsive functions. In this Concept, we summarize the recent development of smart nacre-inspired nanocomposites, including 1D fibers, 2D films and 3D bulk nanocomposites, in response to temperature, moisture, light, strain, and so on. We show that diverse smart nanocomposites could be designed by combining various conventional fabrication methods of nacre-inspired nanocomposites with responsive building blocks and interface interactions. The nacre-inspired strategy is versatile for different kinds of smart nanocomposites in extensive applications, such as strain sensors, displays, artificial muscles, robotics, and so on, and may act as an effective roadmap for designing smart nanocomposites in the future. © 2018 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  11. An Address Event Representation-Based Processing System for a Biped Robot

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Uziel Jaramillo-Avila

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available In recent years, several important advances have been made in the fields of both biologically inspired sensorial processing and locomotion systems, such as Address Event Representation-based cameras (or Dynamic Vision Sensors and in human-like robot locomotion, e.g., the walking of a biped robot. However, making these fields merge properly is not an easy task. In this regard, Neuromorphic Engineering is a fast-growing research field, the main goal of which is the biologically inspired design of hybrid hardware systems in order to mimic neural architectures and to process information in the manner of the brain. However, few robotic applications exist to illustrate them. The main goal of this work is to demonstrate, by creating a closed-loop system using only bio-inspired techniques, how such applications can work properly. We present an algorithm using Spiking Neural Networks (SNN for a biped robot equipped with a Dynamic Vision Sensor, which is designed to follow a line drawn on the floor. This is a commonly used method for demonstrating control techniques. Most of them are fairly simple to implement without very sophisticated components; however, it can still serve as a good test in more elaborate circumstances. In addition, the locomotion system proposed is able to coordinately control the six DOFs of a biped robot in switching between basic forms of movement. The latter has been implemented as a FPGA-based neuromorphic system. Numerical tests and hardware validation are presented.

  12. A biologically inspired two-species exclusion model: effects of RNA polymerase motor traffic on simultaneous DNA replication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghosh, Soumendu; Mishra, Bhavya; Patra, Shubhadeep; Schadschneider, Andreas; Chowdhury, Debashish

    2018-04-01

    We introduce a two-species exclusion model to describe the key features of the conflict between the RNA polymerase (RNAP) motor traffic, engaged in the transcription of a segment of DNA, concomitant with the progress of two DNA replication forks on the same DNA segment. One of the species of particles (P) represents RNAP motors while the other (R) represents the replication forks. Motivated by the biological phenomena that this model is intended to capture, a maximum of two R particles only are allowed to enter the lattice from two opposite ends whereas the unrestricted number of P particles constitutes a totally asymmetric simple exclusion process (TASEP) in a segment in the middle of the lattice. The model captures three distinct pathways for resolving the co-directional as well as head-on collision between the P and R particles. Using Monte Carlo simulations and heuristic analytical arguments that combine exact results for the TASEP with mean-field approximations, we predict the possible outcomes of the conflict between the traffic of RNAP motors (P particles engaged in transcription) and the replication forks (R particles). In principle, the model can be adapted to experimental conditions to account for the data quantitatively.

  13. Behavior Selection of Mobile Robot Based on Integration of Multimodal Information

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Bin; Kaneko, Masahide

    Recently, biologically inspired robots have been developed to acquire the capacity for directing visual attention to salient stimulus generated from the audiovisual environment. On purpose to realize this behavior, a general method is to calculate saliency maps to represent how much the external information attracts the robot's visual attention, where the audiovisual information and robot's motion status should be involved. In this paper, we represent a visual attention model where three modalities, that is, audio information, visual information and robot's motor status are considered, while the previous researches have not considered all of them. Firstly, we introduce a 2-D density map, on which the value denotes how much the robot pays attention to each spatial location. Then we model the attention density using a Bayesian network where the robot's motion statuses are involved. Secondly, the information from both of audio and visual modalities is integrated with the attention density map in integrate-fire neurons. The robot can direct its attention to the locations where the integrate-fire neurons are fired. Finally, the visual attention model is applied to make the robot select the visual information from the environment, and react to the content selected. Experimental results show that it is possible for robots to acquire the visual information related to their behaviors by using the attention model considering motion statuses. The robot can select its behaviors to adapt to the dynamic environment as well as to switch to another task according to the recognition results of visual attention.

  14. Molecular plasma deposition: biologically inspired nanohydroxyapatite coatings on anodized nanotubular titanium for improving osteoblast density

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Balasundaram G

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Ganesan Balasundaram,1 Daniel M Storey,1 Thomas J Webster2,3 1Chameleon Scientific, Longmont, CO, USA; 2Department of Chemical Engineering, Northeastern University, Boston, MA, USA; 3Center of Excellence for Advanced Materials Research, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia Abstract: In order to begin to prepare a novel orthopedic implant that mimics the natural bone environment, the objective of this in vitro study was to synthesize nanocrystalline hydroxyapatite (NHA and coat it on titanium (Ti using molecular plasma deposition (MPD. NHA was synthesized through a wet chemical process followed by a hydrothermal treatment. NHA and micron sized hydroxyapatite (MHA were prepared by processing NHA coatings at 500°C and 900°C, respectively. The coatings were characterized before and after sintering using scanning electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy, and X-ray diffraction. The results revealed that the post-MPD heat treatment of up to 500°C effectively restored the structural and topographical integrity of NHA. In order to determine the in vitro biological responses of the MPD-coated surfaces, the attachment and spreading of osteoblasts (bone-forming cells on the uncoated, NHA-coated, and MHA-coated anodized Ti were investigated. Most importantly, the NHA-coated substrates supported a larger number of adherent cells than the MHA-coated and uncoated substrates. The morphology of these cells was assessed by scanning electron microscopy and the observed shapes were different for each substrate type. The present results are the first reports using MPD in the framework of hydroxyapatite coatings on Ti to enhance osteoblast responses and encourage further studies on MPD-based hydroxyapatite coatings on Ti for improved orthopedic applications. Keywords: hydroxyapatite, anodization, nanotechnology

  15. Parametric motion control of robotic arms: A biologically based approach using neural networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bock, O.; D'Eleuterio, G. M. T.; Lipitkas, J.; Grodski, J. J.

    1993-01-01

    A neural network based system is presented which is able to generate point-to-point movements of robotic manipulators. The foundation of this approach is the use of prototypical control torque signals which are defined by a set of parameters. The parameter set is used for scaling and shaping of these prototypical torque signals to effect a desired outcome of the system. This approach is based on neurophysiological findings that the central nervous system stores generalized cognitive representations of movements called synergies, schemas, or motor programs. It has been proposed that these motor programs may be stored as torque-time functions in central pattern generators which can be scaled with appropriate time and magnitude parameters. The central pattern generators use these parameters to generate stereotypical torque-time profiles, which are then sent to the joint actuators. Hence, only a small number of parameters need to be determined for each point-to-point movement instead of the entire torque-time trajectory. This same principle is implemented for controlling the joint torques of robotic manipulators where a neural network is used to identify the relationship between the task requirements and the torque parameters. Movements are specified by the initial robot position in joint coordinates and the desired final end-effector position in Cartesian coordinates. This information is provided to the neural network which calculates six torque parameters for a two-link system. The prototypical torque profiles (one per joint) are then scaled by those parameters. After appropriate training of the network, our parametric control design allowed the reproduction of a trained set of movements with relatively high accuracy, and the production of previously untrained movements with comparable accuracy. We conclude that our approach was successful in discriminating between trained movements and in generalizing to untrained movements.

  16. Finding and defining the natural automata acting in living plants: Toward the synthetic biology for robotics and informatics in vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawano, Tomonori; Bouteau, François; Mancuso, Stefano

    2012-11-01

    The automata theory is the mathematical study of abstract machines commonly studied in the theoretical computer science and highly interdisciplinary fields that combine the natural sciences and the theoretical computer science. In the present review article, as the chemical and biological basis for natural computing or informatics, some plants, plant cells or plant-derived molecules involved in signaling are listed and classified as natural sequential machines (namely, the Mealy machines or Moore machines) or finite state automata. By defining the actions (states and transition functions) of these natural automata, the similarity between the computational data processing and plant decision-making processes became obvious. Finally, their putative roles as the parts for plant-based computing or robotic systems are discussed.

  17. Architectures of soft robotic locomotion enabled by simple mechanical principles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Liangliang; Cao, Yunteng; Liu, Yilun; Yang, Zhe; Chen, Xi

    2017-06-28

    In nature, a variety of limbless locomotion patterns flourish, from the small or basic life forms (Escherichia coli, amoebae, etc.) to the large or intelligent creatures (e.g., slugs, starfishes, earthworms, octopuses, jellyfishes, and snakes). Many bioinspired soft robots based on locomotion have been developed in the past few decades. In this work, based on the kinematics and dynamics of two representative locomotion modes (i.e., worm-like crawling and snake-like slithering), we propose a broad set of innovative designs for soft mobile robots through simple mechanical principles. Inspired by and going beyond the existing biological systems, these designs include 1-D (dimensional), 2-D, and 3-D robotic locomotion patterns enabled by the simple actuation of continuous beams. We report herein over 20 locomotion modes achieving various locomotion functions, including crawling, rising, running, creeping, squirming, slithering, swimming, jumping, turning, turning over, helix rolling, wheeling, etc. Some are able to reach high speed, high efficiency, and overcome obstacles. All these locomotion strategies and functions can be integrated into a simple beam model. The proposed simple and robust models are adaptive for severe and complex environments. These elegant designs for diverse robotic locomotion patterns are expected to underpin future deployments of soft robots and to inspire a series of advanced designs.

  18. Neuro-robotics from brain machine interfaces to rehabilitation robotics

    CERN Document Server

    Artemiadis

    2014-01-01

    Neuro-robotics is one of the most multidisciplinary fields of the last decades, fusing information and knowledge from neuroscience, engineering and computer science. This book focuses on the results from the strategic alliance between Neuroscience and Robotics that help the scientific community to better understand the brain as well as design robotic devices and algorithms for interfacing humans and robots. The first part of the book introduces the idea of neuro-robotics, by presenting state-of-the-art bio-inspired devices. The second part of the book focuses on human-machine interfaces for pe

  19. Guard Cell and Tropomyosin Inspired Chemical Sensor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacquelyn K.S. Nagel

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Sensors are an integral part of many engineered products and systems. Biological inspiration has the potential to improve current sensor designs as well as inspire innovative ones. This paper presents the design of an innovative, biologically-inspired chemical sensor that performs “up-front” processing through mechanical means. Inspiration from the physiology (function of the guard cell coupled with the morphology (form and physiology of tropomyosin resulted in two concept variants for the chemical sensor. Applications of the sensor design include environmental monitoring of harmful gases, and a non-invasive approach to detect illnesses including diabetes, liver disease, and cancer on the breath.

  20. Reasons for singularity in robot teleoperation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Marhenke, Ilka; Fischer, Kerstin; Savarimuthu, Thiusius Rajeeth

    2014-01-01

    In this paper, the causes for singularity of a robot arm in teleoperation for robot learning from demonstration are analyzed. Singularity is the alignment of robot joints, which prevents the configuration of the inverse kinematics. Inspired by users' own hypotheses, we investigated speed and dela...

  1. BIOLOGICALLY INSPIRED HARDWARE CELL ARCHITECTURE

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    2010-01-01

    Disclosed is a system comprising: - a reconfigurable hardware platform; - a plurality of hardware units defined as cells adapted to be programmed to provide self-organization and self-maintenance of the system by means of implementing a program expressed in a programming language defined as DNA...... language, where each cell is adapted to communicate with one or more other cells in the system, and where the system further comprises a converter program adapted to convert keywords from the DNA language to a binary DNA code; where the self-organisation comprises that the DNA code is transmitted to one...... or more of the cells, and each of the one or more cells is adapted to determine its function in the system; where if a fault occurs in a first cell and the first cell ceases to perform its function, self-maintenance is performed by that the system transmits information to the cells that the first cell has...

  2. Robotic, MEMS-based Multi Utility Sample Preparation Instrument for ISS Biological Workstation, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This project will develop a multi-functional, automated sample preparation instrument for biological wet-lab workstations on the ISS. The instrument is based on a...

  3. An octopus-bioinspired solution to movement and manipulation for soft robots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calisti, M; Giorelli, M; Levy, G; Mazzolai, B; Hochner, B; Laschi, C; Dario, P

    2011-09-01

    Soft robotics is a challenging and promising branch of robotics. It can drive significant improvements across various fields of traditional robotics, and contribute solutions to basic problems such as locomotion and manipulation in unstructured environments. A challenging task for soft robotics is to build and control soft robots able to exert effective forces. In recent years, biology has inspired several solutions to such complex problems. This study aims at investigating the smart solution that the Octopus vulgaris adopts to perform a crawling movement, with the same limbs used for grasping and manipulation. An ad hoc robot was designed and built taking as a reference a biological hypothesis on crawling. A silicone arm with cables embedded to replicate the functionality of the arm muscles of the octopus was built. This novel arm is capable of pushing-based locomotion and object grasping, mimicking the movements that octopuses adopt when crawling. The results support the biological observations and clearly show a suitable way to build a more complex soft robot that, with minimum control, can perform diverse tasks.

  4. An octopus-bioinspired solution to movement and manipulation for soft robots

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Calisti, M; Giorelli, M; Laschi, C; Dario, P [BioRobotics Institute, Scuola Superiore Sant' Anna, Pisa (Italy); Levy, G; Hochner, B [Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem (Israel); Mazzolai, B, E-mail: marcello.calisti@sssup.it, E-mail: michele.giorelli@sssup.it, E-mail: guy.levy@mail.huji.ac.il, E-mail: barbara.mazzolai@iit.it, E-mail: Binyamin.Hochner@huji.ac.il, E-mail: cecilia.laschi@sssup.it, E-mail: paolo.dario@sssup.it [Centre for Micro-BioRobotics-SSSA, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Pontedera (Italy)

    2011-09-15

    Soft robotics is a challenging and promising branch of robotics. It can drive significant improvements across various fields of traditional robotics, and contribute solutions to basic problems such as locomotion and manipulation in unstructured environments. A challenging task for soft robotics is to build and control soft robots able to exert effective forces. In recent years, biology has inspired several solutions to such complex problems. This study aims at investigating the smart solution that the Octopus vulgaris adopts to perform a crawling movement, with the same limbs used for grasping and manipulation. An ad hoc robot was designed and built taking as a reference a biological hypothesis on crawling. A silicone arm with cables embedded to replicate the functionality of the arm muscles of the octopus was built. This novel arm is capable of pushing-based locomotion and object grasping, mimicking the movements that octopuses adopt when crawling. The results support the biological observations and clearly show a suitable way to build a more complex soft robot that, with minimum control, can perform diverse tasks.

  5. An octopus-bioinspired solution to movement and manipulation for soft robots

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Calisti, M; Giorelli, M; Laschi, C; Dario, P; Levy, G; Hochner, B; Mazzolai, B

    2011-01-01

    Soft robotics is a challenging and promising branch of robotics. It can drive significant improvements across various fields of traditional robotics, and contribute solutions to basic problems such as locomotion and manipulation in unstructured environments. A challenging task for soft robotics is to build and control soft robots able to exert effective forces. In recent years, biology has inspired several solutions to such complex problems. This study aims at investigating the smart solution that the Octopus vulgaris adopts to perform a crawling movement, with the same limbs used for grasping and manipulation. An ad hoc robot was designed and built taking as a reference a biological hypothesis on crawling. A silicone arm with cables embedded to replicate the functionality of the arm muscles of the octopus was built. This novel arm is capable of pushing-based locomotion and object grasping, mimicking the movements that octopuses adopt when crawling. The results support the biological observations and clearly show a suitable way to build a more complex soft robot that, with minimum control, can perform diverse tasks.

  6. 1D Printing of Recyclable Robots

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cellucci, Daniel; MacCurdy, Robert; Lipson, Hod

    2017-01-01

    Recent advances in 3D printing are revolutionizing manufacturing, enabling the fabrication of structures with unprecedented complexity and functionality. Yet biological systems are able to fabricate systems with far greater complexity using a process that involves assembling and folding a linear...... string. Here, we demonstrate a 1D printing system that uses an approach inspired by the ribosome to fabricate a variety of specialized robotic automata from a single string of source material. This proof-ofconcept system involves both a novel manufacturing platform that configures the source material...... using folding and a computational optimization tool that allows designs to be produced from the specification of high-level goals. We show that our 1D printing system is able to produce three distinct robots from the same source material, each of which is capable of accomplishing a specialized...

  7. Integrating robotic action with biologic perception: A brain-machine symbiosis theory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahmoudi, Babak

    In patients with motor disability the natural cyclic flow of information between the brain and external environment is disrupted by their limb impairment. Brain-Machine Interfaces (BMIs) aim to provide new communication channels between the brain and environment by direct translation of brain's internal states into actions. For enabling the user in a wide range of daily life activities, the challenge is designing neural decoders that autonomously adapt to different tasks, environments, and to changes in the pattern of neural activity. In this dissertation, a novel decoding framework for BMIs is developed in which a computational agent autonomously learns how to translate neural states into action based on maximization of a measure of shared goal between user and the agent. Since the agent and brain share the same goal, a symbiotic relationship between them will evolve therefore this decoding paradigm is called a Brain-Machine Symbiosis (BMS) framework. A decoding agent was implemented within the BMS framework based on the Actor-Critic method of Reinforcement Learning. The rule of the Actor as a neural decoder was to find mapping between the neural representation of motor states in the primary motor cortex (MI) and robot actions in order to solve reaching tasks. The Actor learned the optimal control policy using an evaluative feedback that was estimated by the Critic directly from the user's neural activity of the Nucleus Accumbens (NAcc). Through a series of computational neuroscience studies in a cohort of rats it was demonstrated that NAcc could provide a useful evaluative feedback by predicting the increase or decrease in the probability of earning reward based on the environmental conditions. Using a closed-loop BMI simulator it was demonstrated the Actor-Critic decoding architecture was able to adapt to different tasks as well as changes in the pattern of neural activity. The custom design of a dual micro-wire array enabled simultaneous implantation of MI and

  8. System Design of a Cheetah Robot Toward Ultra-high Speed

    OpenAIRE

    Mantian Li; Xin Wang; Wei Guo; Pengfei Wang; Lining Sun

    2014-01-01

    High-speed legged locomotion pushes the limits of the most challenging problems of design and development of the mechanism, also the control and the perception method. The cheetah is an existence proof of concept of what we imitate for high-speed running, and provides us lots of inspiration on design. In this paper, a new model of a cheetah-like robot is developed using anatomical analysis and design. Inspired by a biological neural mechanism, we propose a novel control method for controlling...

  9. Exploratorium: Robots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brand, Judith, Ed.

    2002-01-01

    This issue of Exploratorium Magazine focuses on the topic robotics. It explains how to make a vibrating robotic bug and features articles on robots. Contents include: (1) "Where Robot Mice and Robot Men Run Round in Robot Towns" (Ray Bradbury); (2) "Robots at Work" (Jake Widman); (3) "Make a Vibrating Robotic Bug" (Modesto Tamez); (4) "The Robot…

  10. Colias: An Autonomous Micro Robot for Swarm Robotic Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Farshad Arvin

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Robotic swarms that take inspiration from nature are becoming a fascinating topic for multi-robot researchers. The aim is to control a large number of simple robots in order to solve common complex tasks. Due to the hardware complexities and cost of robot platforms, current research in swarm robotics is mostly performed by simulation software. The simulation of large numbers of these robots in robotic swarm applications is extremely complex and often inaccurate due to the poor modelling of external conditions. In this paper, we present the design of a low-cost, open-platform, autonomous micro-robot (Colias for robotic swarm applications. Colias employs a circular platform with a diameter of 4 cm. It has a maximum speed of 35 cm/s which enables it to be used in swarm scenarios very quickly over large arenas. Long-range infrared modules with an adjustable output power allow the robot to communicate with its direct neighbours at a range of 0.5 cm to 2 m. Colias has been designed as a complete platform with supporting software development tools for robotics education and research. It has been tested in both individual and swarm scenarios, and the observed results demonstrate its feasibility for use as a micro-sized mobile robot and as a low-cost platform for robot swarm applications.

  11. Design and control of a pneumatic musculoskeletal biped robot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zang, Xizhe; Liu, Yixiang; Liu, Xinyu; Zhao, Jie

    2016-04-29

    Pneumatic artificial muscles are quite promising actuators for humanoid robots owing to their similar characteristics with human muscles. Moreover, biologically inspired musculoskeletal systems are particularly important for humanoid robots to perform versatile dynamic tasks. This study aims to develop a pneumatic musculoskeletal biped robot, and its controller, to realize human-like walking. According to the simplified musculoskeletal structure of human lower limbs, each leg of the biped robot is driven by nine muscles, including three pairs of monoarticular muscles which are arranged in the flexor-extensor form, as well as three biarticular muscles which span two joints. To lower cost, high-speed on/off solenoid valves rather than proportional valves are used to control the muscles. The joint trajectory tracking controller based on PID control method is designed to achieve the desired motion. Considering the complex characteristics of pneumatic artificial muscles, the control model is obtained through parameter identification experiments. Preliminary experimental results demonstrate that the biped robot is able to walk with this control strategy. The proposed musculoskeletal structure and control strategy are effective for the biped robot to achieve human-like walking.

  12. Jumping robots: a biomimetic solution to locomotion across rough terrain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Armour, Rhodri; Paskins, Keith; Bowyer, Adrian; Vincent, Julian; Megill, William; Bomphrey, Richard

    2007-09-01

    This paper introduces jumping robots as a means to traverse rough terrain; such terrain can pose problems for traditional wheeled, tracked and legged designs. The diversity of jumping mechanisms found in nature is explored to support the theory that jumping is a desirable ability for a robot locomotion system to incorporate, and then the size-related constraints are determined from first principles. A series of existing jumping robots are presented and their performance summarized. The authors present two new biologically inspired jumping robots, Jollbot and Glumper, both of which incorporate additional locomotion techniques of rolling and gliding respectively. Jollbot consists of metal hoop springs forming a 300 mm diameter sphere, and when jumping it raises its centre of gravity by 0.22 m and clears a height of 0.18 m. Glumper is of octahedral shape, with four 'legs' that each comprise two 500 mm lengths of CFRP tube articulating around torsion spring 'knees'. It is able to raise its centre of gravity by 1.60 m and clears a height of 1.17 m. The jumping performance of the jumping robot designs presented is discussed and compared against some specialized jumping animals. Specific power output is thought to be the performance-limiting factor for a jumping robot, which requires the maximization of the amount of energy that can be stored together with a minimization of mass. It is demonstrated that this can be achieved through optimization and careful materials selection.

  13. Biomimetics in the design of a robotic exoskeleton for upper limb therapy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baniqued, Paul Dominick E.; Dungao, Jade R.; Manguerra, Michael V.; Baldovino, Renann G.; Abad, Alexander C.; Bugtai, Nilo T.

    2018-02-01

    Current methodologies in designing robotic exoskeletons for upper limb therapy simplify the complex requirements of the human anatomy. As a result, such devices tend to compromise safety and biocompatibility with the intended user. However, a new design methodology uses biological analogues as inspiration to address these technical issues. This approach follows that of biomimetics, a design principle that uses the extraction and transfer of useful information from natural morphologies and processes to solve technical design issues. In this study, a biomimetic approach in the design of a 5-degree-of-freedom robotic exoskeleton for upper limb therapy was performed. A review of biomimetics was first discussed along with its current contribution to the design of rehabilitation robots. With a proposed methodological framework, the design for an upper limb robotic exoskeleton was generated using CATIA software. The design was inspired by the morphology of the bones and the muscle force transmission of the upper limbs. Finally, a full design assembly presented had integrated features extracted from the biological analogue. The successful execution of a biomimetic design methodology made a case in providing safer and more biocompatible robots for rehabilitation.

  14. Size-Dictionary Interpolation for Robot's Adjustment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Morteza eDaneshmand

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes the classification and size-dictionary interpolation of the three-dimensional data obtained by a laser scanner to be used in a realistic virtual fitting room, where automatic activation of the chosen mannequin robot, while several mannequin robots of different genders and sizes are simultaneously connected to the same computer, is also considered to make it mimic the body shapes and sizes instantly. The classification process consists of two layers, dealing, respectively, with gender and size. The interpolation procedure tries to find out which set of the positions of the biologically-inspired actuators for activation of the mannequin robots could lead to the closest possible resemblance of the shape of the body of the person having been scanned, through linearly mapping the distances between the subsequent size-templates and the corresponding position set of the bioengineered actuators, and subsequently, calculating the control measures that could maintain the same distance proportions, where minimizing the Euclidean distance between the size-dictionary template vectors and that of the desired body sizes determines the mathematical description. In this research work, the experimental results of the implementation of the proposed method on Fits.me's mannequin robots are visually illustrated, and explanation of the remaining steps towards completion of the whole realistic online fitting package is provided.

  15. Microflyers: inspiration from nature

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sirohi, Jayant

    2013-04-01

    Over the past decade, there has been considerable interest in miniaturizing aircraft to create a class of extremely small, robotic vehicles with a gross mass on the order of tens of grams and a dimension on the order of tens of centimeters. These are collectively refered to as micro aerial vehicles (MAVs) or microflyers. Because the size of microflyers is on the same order as that of small birds and large insects, engineers are turning to nature for inspiration. Bioinspired concepts make use of structural or aerodynamic mechanisms that are observed in insects and birds, such as elastic energy storage and unsteady aerodynamics. Biomimetic concepts attempt to replicate the form and function of natural flyers, such as flapping-wing propulsion and external appearance. This paper reviews recent developments in the area of man-made microflyers. The design space for microflyers will be described, along with fundamental physical limits to miniaturization. Key aerodynamic phenomena at the scale of microflyers will be highlighted. Because the focus is on bioinspiration and biomimetics, scaled-down versions of conventional aircraft, such as fixed wing micro air vehicles and microhelicopters will not be addressed. A few representative bioinspired and biomimetic microflyer concepts developed by researchers will be described in detail. Finally, some of the sensing mechanisms used by natural flyers that are being implemented in man-made microflyers will be discussed.

  16. Integration of robotics and neuroscience beyond the hand: What kind of synergies?. Comment on "Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands" by Marco Santello et al.

    Science.gov (United States)

    d'Avella, Andrea

    2016-07-01

    Santello et al. [1] review an impressive amount of work on the control of biological and artificial hands that demonstrates how the concept of synergies can lead to a successful integration of robotics and neuroscience. Is it possible to generalize the same approach to the control of biological and artificial limbs and bodies beyond the hand? The human hand synergies that appear most relevant for robotic hands are those defined at the kinematic level, i.e. postural synergies [2]. Postural synergies capture the geometric relations among the many joints of the hand and allow for a low dimensional characterization and synthesis of the static hand postures involved in grasping and manipulating a large set of objects. However, many other complex motor skills such as walking, reaching, throwing, and catching require controlling multi-articular time-varying trajectories rather than static postures. Dynamic control of biological and artificial limbs and bodies, especially when geometric and inertial parameters are uncertain and the joints are compliant, poses great challenges. What kind of synergies might simplify the dynamic control of motor skills involving upper and lower limbs as well as the whole body?

  17. Operant Conditioning: A Minimal Components Requirement in Artificial Spiking Neurons Designed for Bio-Inspired Robot’s Controller

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    André eCyr

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available We demonstrate the operant conditioning (OC learning process within a basic bio-inspired robot controller paradigm, using an artificial spiking neural network (ASNN with minimal component count as artificial brain. In biological agents, OC results in behavioral changes that are learned from the consequences of previous actions, using progressive prediction adjustment triggered by reinforcers. In a robotics context, virtual and physical robots may benefit from a similar learning skill when facing unknown environments with no supervision. In this work, we demonstrate that a simple ASNN can efficiently realise many OC scenarios. The elementary learning kernel that we describe relies on a few critical neurons, synaptic links and the integration of habituation and spike-timing dependent plasticity (STDP as learning rules. Using four tasks of incremental complexity, our experimental results show that such minimal neural component set may be sufficient to implement many OC procedures. Hence, with the described bio-inspired module, OC can be implemented in a wide range of robot controllers, including those with limited computational resources.

  18. Testing Biological Hypotheses with Embodied Robots: Adaptations, Accidents, and By-Products in the Evolution of Vertebrates

    OpenAIRE

    Roberts, Sonia F.; Hirokawa, Jonathan; Rosenblum, Hannah G.; Sakhtah, Hassan; Gutierrez, Andres A.; Porter, Marianne E.; Long, John H.

    2014-01-01

    Evolutionary robotics allows biologists to test hypotheses about extinct animals. In our case, we modeled some of the first vertebrates, jawless fishes, in order to study the evolution of the trait after which vertebrates are named: vertebrae. We tested the hypothesis that vertebrae are an adaptation for enhanced feeding and fleeing performance. We created a population of autonomous embodied robots, Preyro, in which the number of vertebrae, N, were free to evolve. In addition, two other trait...

  19. Autonomous Shepherding Behaviors of Multiple Target Steering Robots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Wonki; Kim, DaeEun

    2017-11-25

    This paper presents a distributed coordination methodology for multi-robot systems, based on nearest-neighbor interactions. Among many interesting tasks that may be performed using swarm robots, we propose a biologically-inspired control law for a shepherding task, whereby a group of external agents drives another group of agents to a desired location. First, we generated sheep-like robots that act like a flock. We assume that each agent is capable of measuring the relative location and velocity to each of its neighbors within a limited sensing area. Then, we designed a control strategy for shepherd-like robots that have information regarding where to go and a steering ability to control the flock, according to the robots' position relative to the flock. We define several independent behavior rules; each agent calculates to what extent it will move by summarizing each rule. The flocking sheep agents detect the steering agents and try to avoid them; this tendency leads to movement of the flock. Each steering agent only needs to focus on guiding the nearest flocking agent to the desired location. Without centralized coordination, multiple steering agents produce an arc formation to control the flock effectively. In addition, we propose a new rule for collecting behavior, whereby a scattered flock or multiple flocks are consolidated. From simulation results with multiple robots, we show that each robot performs actions for the shepherding behavior, and only a few steering agents are needed to control the whole flock. The results are displayed in maps that trace the paths of the flock and steering robots. Performance is evaluated via time cost and path accuracy to demonstrate the effectiveness of this approach.

  20. Tactical mobile robots for urban search and rescue

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blitch, John; Sidki, Nahid; Durkin, Tim

    2000-07-01

    Few disasters can inspire more compassion for victims and families than those involving structural collapse. Video clips of children's bodies pulled from earthquake stricken cities and bombing sties tend to invoke tremendous grief and sorrow because of the totally unpredictable nature of the crisis and lack of even the slightest degree of negligence (such as with those who choose to ignore storm warnings). Heartbreaking stories of people buried alive for days provide a visceral and horrific perspective of some of greatest fears ever to be imagined by human beings. Current trends toward urban sprawl and increasing human discord dictates that structural collapse disasters will continue to present themselves at an alarming rate. The proliferation of domestic terrorism, HAZMAT and biological contaminants further complicates the matter further and presents a daunting problem set for Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) organizations around the world. This paper amplifies the case for robot assisted search and rescue that was first presented during the KNOBSAR project initiated at the Colorado School of Mines in 1995. It anticipates increasing technical development in mobile robot technologies and promotes their use for a wide variety of humanitarian assistance missions. Focus is placed on development of advanced robotic systems that are employed in a complementary tool-like fashion as opposed to traditional robotic approaches that portend to replace humans in hazardous tasks. Operational challenges for USAR are presented first, followed by a brief history of mobiles robot development. The paper then presents conformal robotics as a new design paradigm with emphasis on variable geometry and volumes. A section on robot perception follows with an initial attempt to characterize sensing in a volumetric manner. Collaborative rescue is then briefly discussed with an emphasis on marsupial operations and linked mobility. The paper concludes with an emphasis on Human Robot Interface

  1. Robot Actors, Robot Dramaturgies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jochum, Elizabeth

    This paper considers the use of tele-operated robots in live performance. Robots and performance have long been linked, from the working androids and automata staged in popular exhibitions during the nineteenth century and the robots featured at Cybernetic Serendipity (1968) and the World Expo...

  2. Modular Robotics in an African Context

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, Henrik Hautop

    2011-01-01

    In this paper, we review the concept, development and use of modular robotic devices for education, health improvements, and business in Africa. The modular robotics inspired technology has the advantage of allowing any user easy access to a physical construction of new and advanced technology. We...... conceptualized several educational tools inspired by modular robotics for contextualized IT education in Tanzania, leading to a novel IT degree program and the development of East Africa’s first science and business park in Iringa, Tanzania. The prototypes inspired by modular robotics were developed in the local......, rural context and tested by local users in hospitals and rehabilitation centres. In this paper, we review the development of both modular building blocks for education and modular robotic tiles for rehabilitation in Tanzania....

  3. Distributed power and control actuation in the thoracic mechanics of a robotic insect

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Finio, Benjamin M; Wood, Robert J

    2010-01-01

    Recent advances in the understanding of biological flight have inspired roboticists to create flapping-wing vehicles on the scale of insects and small birds. While our understanding of the wing kinematics, flight musculature and neuromotor control systems of insects has expanded, in practice it has proven quite difficult to construct an at-scale mechanical device capable of similar flight performance. One of the key challenges is the development of an effective and efficient transmission mechanism to control wing motions. Here we present multiple insect-scale robotic thorax designs capable of producing asymmetric wing kinematics similar to those observed in nature and utilized by dipteran insects to maneuver. Inspired by the thoracic mechanics of dipteran insects, which entail a morphological separation of power and control muscles, these designs show that such distributed actuation can also modulate wing motion in a robotic design.

  4. Distributed power and control actuation in the thoracic mechanics of a robotic insect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finio, Benjamin M; Wood, Robert J

    2010-12-01

    Recent advances in the understanding of biological flight have inspired roboticists to create flapping-wing vehicles on the scale of insects and small birds. While our understanding of the wing kinematics, flight musculature and neuromotor control systems of insects has expanded, in practice it has proven quite difficult to construct an at-scale mechanical device capable of similar flight performance. One of the key challenges is the development of an effective and efficient transmission mechanism to control wing motions. Here we present multiple insect-scale robotic thorax designs capable of producing asymmetric wing kinematics similar to those observed in nature and utilized by dipteran insects to maneuver. Inspired by the thoracic mechanics of dipteran insects, which entail a morphological separation of power and control muscles, these designs show that such distributed actuation can also modulate wing motion in a robotic design.

  5. Robotic architectures

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Mtshali, M

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available In the development of mobile robotic systems, a robotic architecture plays a crucial role in interconnecting all the sub-systems and controlling the system. The design of robotic architectures for mobile autonomous robots is a challenging...

  6. Social humanoid robot SARA: development of the wrist mechanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Penčić, M.; Rackov, M.; Čavić, M.; Kiss, I.; Cioată, V. G.

    2018-01-01

    This paper presents the development of a wrist mechanism for humanoid robots. The research was conducted within the project which develops social humanoid robot Sara - a mobile anthropomorphic platform for researching the social behaviour of robots. There are two basic ways for the realization of humanoid wrist. The first one is based on biologically inspired structures that have variable stiffness, and the second one on low backlash mechanisms that have high stiffness. Our solution is low backlash differential mechanism that requires small actuators. Based on the kinematic-dynamic requirements, a dynamic model of the robot wrist is formed. A dynamic simulation for several hand positions was performed and the driving torques of the wrist mechanism were determined. The realized wrist has 2 DOFs and enables movements in the direction of flexion/extension 115°, ulnar/radial deviation ±45° and the combination of these two movements. It consists of a differential mechanism with three spur bevel gears, two of which are driving and identical, while the last one is the driven gear to which the robot hand is attached. Power transmission and motion from the actuator to the input links of the differential mechanism is realized with two parallel placed identical gear mechanisms. The wrist mechanism has high carrying capacity and reliability, high efficiency, a compact design and low backlash that provides high positioning accuracy and repeatability of movements, which is essential for motion control.

  7. Innovation Inspired by Nature: Capabilities, Potentials and Challenges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph

    2012-01-01

    Through evolution, nature came up with many effective solutions to its challenges and continually improving them. By mimicking, coping and being inspired, humans have been using Nature's solutions to address their own challenges. In recent years, the implementation of nature's capabilities has intensified with our growing understanding of the various biological and nastic mechanisms and processes. Successes include even the making of humanlike robots that perform such lifelike tasks as walking, talking, making eye-contact, interpreting speech and facial expressions, as well as many other humanlike functions. Generally, once humans are able to implement a function then, thru rapid advances in technology, capabilities are developed that can significantly exceed the original source of inspiration in Nature. Examples include flight where there is no species that can fly as high, carry so much mass, has so large dimensions and fly so fast, and operate at as such extreme conditions as our aircraft and other aerospace systems. However, using the capabilities of today's technology, there are many challenges that are not feasible to address in mimicking characteristics of species and plants. In this manuscript, state-of-the-art of biomimetic capabilities, potentials and challenges are reviewed.

  8. Magnetic fish-robot based on multi-motion control of a flexible magnetic actuator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Sung Hoon; Shin, Kyoosik; Hashi, Shuichiro; Ishiyama, Kazushi

    2012-09-01

    This paper presents a biologically inspired fish-robot driven by a single flexible magnetic actuator with a rotating magnetic field in a three-axis Helmholtz coil. Generally, magnetic fish-robots are powered by alternating and gradient magnetic fields, which provide a single motion such as bending the fish-robot's fins. On the other hand, a flexible magnetic actuator driven by an external rotating magnetic field can create several gaits such as the bending vibration, the twisting vibration, and their combination. Most magnetic fish-like micro-robots do not have pectoral fins on the side and are simply propelled by the tail fin. The proposed robot can swim and perform a variety of maneuvers with the addition of pectoral fins and control of the magnetic torque direction. In this paper, we find that the robot's dynamic actuation correlates with the magnetic actuator and the rotating magnetic field. The proposed robot is also equipped with new features, such as a total of six degrees of freedom, a new control method that stabilizes posture, three-dimensional swimming, a new velocity control, and new turning abilities.

  9. Magnetic fish-robot based on multi-motion control of a flexible magnetic actuator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Sung Hoon; Hashi, Shuichiro; Ishiyama, Kazushi; Shin, Kyoosik

    2012-01-01

    This paper presents a biologically inspired fish-robot driven by a single flexible magnetic actuator with a rotating magnetic field in a three-axis Helmholtz coil. Generally, magnetic fish-robots are powered by alternating and gradient magnetic fields, which provide a single motion such as bending the fish-robot's fins. On the other hand, a flexible magnetic actuator driven by an external rotating magnetic field can create several gaits such as the bending vibration, the twisting vibration, and their combination. Most magnetic fish-like micro-robots do not have pectoral fins on the side and are simply propelled by the tail fin. The proposed robot can swim and perform a variety of maneuvers with the addition of pectoral fins and control of the magnetic torque direction. In this paper, we find that the robot's dynamic actuation correlates with the magnetic actuator and the rotating magnetic field. The proposed robot is also equipped with new features, such as a total of six degrees of freedom, a new control method that stabilizes posture, three-dimensional swimming, a new velocity control, and new turning abilities. (paper)

  10. Nature as an engineer: one simple concept of a bio-inspired functional artificial muscle

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schmitt, S; Haeufle, D F B; Günther, M; Blickhan, R

    2012-01-01

    The biological muscle is a powerful, flexible and versatile actuator. Its intrinsic characteristics determine the way how movements are generated and controlled. Robotic and prosthetic applications expect to profit from relying on bio-inspired actuators which exhibit natural (muscle-like) characteristics. As of today, when constructing a technical actuator, it is not possible to copy the exact molecular structure of a biological muscle. Alternatively, the question may be put how its characteristics can be realized with known mechanical components. Recently, a mechanical construct for an artificial muscle was proposed, which exhibits hyperbolic force–velocity characteristics. In this paper, we promote the constructing concept which is made by substantiating the mechanical design of biological muscle by a simple model, proving the feasibility of its real-world implementation, and checking their output both for mutual consistency and agreement with biological measurements. In particular, the relations of force, enthalpy rate and mechanical efficiency versus contraction velocity of both the construct’s technical implementation and its numerical model were determined in quick-release experiments. All model predictions for these relations and the hardware results are now in good agreement with the biological literature. We conclude that the construct represents a mechanical concept of natural actuation, which is suitable for laying down some useful suggestions when designing bio-inspired actuators. (paper)

  11. Nature as an engineer: one simple concept of a bio-inspired functional artificial muscle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmitt, S; Haeufle, D F B; Blickhan, R; Günther, M

    2012-09-01

    The biological muscle is a powerful, flexible and versatile actuator. Its intrinsic characteristics determine the way how movements are generated and controlled. Robotic and prosthetic applications expect to profit from relying on bio-inspired actuators which exhibit natural (muscle-like) characteristics. As of today, when constructing a technical actuator, it is not possible to copy the exact molecular structure of a biological muscle. Alternatively, the question may be put how its characteristics can be realized with known mechanical components. Recently, a mechanical construct for an artificial muscle was proposed, which exhibits hyperbolic force-velocity characteristics. In this paper, we promote the constructing concept which is made by substantiating the mechanical design of biological muscle by a simple model, proving the feasibility of its real-world implementation, and checking their output both for mutual consistency and agreement with biological measurements. In particular, the relations of force, enthalpy rate and mechanical efficiency versus contraction velocity of both the construct's technical implementation and its numerical model were determined in quick-release experiments. All model predictions for these relations and the hardware results are now in good agreement with the biological literature. We conclude that the construct represents a mechanical concept of natural actuation, which is suitable for laying down some useful suggestions when designing bio-inspired actuators.

  12. A computational model of conditioning inspired by Drosophila olfactory system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faghihi, Faramarz; Moustafa, Ahmed A; Heinrich, Ralf; Wörgötter, Florentin

    2017-03-01

    Recent studies have demonstrated that Drosophila melanogaster (briefly Drosophila) can successfully perform higher cognitive processes including second order olfactory conditioning. Understanding the neural mechanism of this behavior can help neuroscientists to unravel the principles of information processing in complex neural systems (e.g. the human brain) and to create efficient and robust robotic systems. In this work, we have developed a biologically-inspired spiking neural network which is able to execute both first and second order conditioning. Experimental studies demonstrated that volume signaling (e.g. by the gaseous transmitter nitric oxide) contributes to memory formation in vertebrates and invertebrates including insects. Based on the existing knowledge of odor encoding in Drosophila, the role of retrograde signaling in memory function, and the integration of synaptic and non-synaptic neural signaling, a neural system is implemented as Simulated fly. Simulated fly navigates in a two-dimensional environment in which it receives odors and electric shocks as sensory stimuli. The model suggests some experimental research on retrograde signaling to investigate neural mechanisms of conditioning in insects and other animals. Moreover, it illustrates a simple strategy to implement higher cognitive capabilities in machines including robots. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Nature-inspired computation in engineering

    CERN Document Server

    2016-01-01

    This timely review book summarizes the state-of-the-art developments in nature-inspired optimization algorithms and their applications in engineering. Algorithms and topics include the overview and history of nature-inspired algorithms, discrete firefly algorithm, discrete cuckoo search, plant propagation algorithm, parameter-free bat algorithm, gravitational search, biogeography-based algorithm, differential evolution, particle swarm optimization and others. Applications include vehicle routing, swarming robots, discrete and combinatorial optimization, clustering of wireless sensor networks, cell formation, economic load dispatch, metamodeling, surrogated-assisted cooperative co-evolution, data fitting and reverse engineering as well as other case studies in engineering. This book will be an ideal reference for researchers, lecturers, graduates and engineers who are interested in nature-inspired computation, artificial intelligence and computational intelligence. It can also serve as a reference for relevant...

  14. Social insects inspire human design

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holbrook, C. Tate; Clark, Rebecca M.; Moore, Dani; Overson, Rick P.; Penick, Clint A.; Smith, Adrian A.

    2010-01-01

    The international conference ‘Social Biomimicry: Insect Societies and Human Design’, hosted by Arizona State University, USA, 18–20 February 2010, explored how the collective behaviour and nest architecture of social insects can inspire innovative and effective solutions to human design challenges. It brought together biologists, designers, engineers, computer scientists, architects and businesspeople, with the dual aims of enriching biology and advancing biomimetic design. PMID:20392721

  15. System Design of a Cheetah Robot Toward Ultra-high Speed

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mantian Li

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available High-speed legged locomotion pushes the limits of the most challenging problems of design and development of the mechanism, also the control and the perception method. The cheetah is an existence proof of concept of what we imitate for high-speed running, and provides us lots of inspiration on design. In this paper, a new model of a cheetah-like robot is developed using anatomical analysis and design. Inspired by a biological neural mechanism, we propose a novel control method for controlling the muscles' flexion and extension, and simulations demonstrate good biological properties and leg's trajectory. Next, a cheetah robot prototype is designed and assembled with pneumatic muscles, a musculoskeletal structure, an antagonistic muscle arrangement and a J-type cushioning foot. Finally, experiments of the robot legs swing and kick ground tests demonstrate its natural manner and validate the design of the robot. In the future, we will test the bounding behaviour of a real legged system.

  16. Lego Robotics: STEM Sport of the Mind

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gura, Mark

    2012-01-01

    Lego robotics is engaging, hands-on, and encompasses every one of the NETS for Students. It also inspires a love of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) and provides the experience students need to use digital age skills in the real world. In this article, the author discusses how schools get involved with Lego Robotics and…

  17. Robotics Team Lights Up New Year's Eve

    Science.gov (United States)

    LeBlanc, Cheryl

    2011-01-01

    A robotics team from Muncie, Indiana--the PhyXTGears--is made up of high school students from throughout Delaware County. The group formed as part of the FIRST Robotics program (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), an international program founded by inventor Dean Kamen in which students work with professional engineers and…

  18. Designing the Mind of a Social Robot

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicole Lazzeri

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Humans have an innate tendency to anthropomorphize surrounding entities and have always been fascinated by the creation of machines endowed with human-inspired capabilities and traits. In the last few decades, this has become a reality with enormous advances in hardware performance, computer graphics, robotics technology, and artificial intelligence. New interdisciplinary research fields have brought forth cognitive robotics aimed at building a new generation of control systems and providing robots with social, empathetic and affective capabilities. This paper presents the design, implementation, and test of a human-inspired cognitive architecture for social robots. State-of-the-art design approaches and methods are thoroughly analyzed and discussed, cases where the developed system has been successfully used are reported. The tests demonstrated the system’s ability to endow a social humanoid robot with human social behaviors and with in-silico robotic emotions.

  19. Locomotor Sub-functions for Control of Assistive Wearable Robots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maziar A. Sharbafi

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available A primary goal of comparative biomechanics is to understand the fundamental physics of locomotion within an evolutionary context. Such an understanding of legged locomotion results in a transition from copying nature to borrowing strategies for interacting with the physical world regarding design and control of bio-inspired legged robots or robotic assistive devices. Inspired from nature, legged locomotion can be composed of three locomotor sub-functions, which are intrinsically interrelated: Stance: redirecting the center of mass by exerting forces on the ground. Swing: cycling the legs between ground contacts. Balance: maintaining body posture. With these three sub-functions, one can understand, design and control legged locomotory systems with formulating them in simpler separated tasks. Coordination between locomotor sub-functions in a harmonized manner appears then as an additional problem when considering legged locomotion. However, biological locomotion shows that appropriate design and control of each sub-function simplifies coordination. It means that only limited exchange of sensory information between the different locomotor sub-function controllers is required enabling the envisioned modular architecture of the locomotion control system. In this paper, we present different studies on implementing different locomotor sub-function controllers on models, robots, and an exoskeleton in addition to demonstrating their abilities in explaining humans' control strategies.

  20. Locomotor Sub-functions for Control of Assistive Wearable Robots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharbafi, Maziar A; Seyfarth, Andre; Zhao, Guoping

    2017-01-01

    A primary goal of comparative biomechanics is to understand the fundamental physics of locomotion within an evolutionary context. Such an understanding of legged locomotion results in a transition from copying nature to borrowing strategies for interacting with the physical world regarding design and control of bio-inspired legged robots or robotic assistive devices. Inspired from nature, legged locomotion can be composed of three locomotor sub-functions, which are intrinsically interrelated: Stance : redirecting the center of mass by exerting forces on the ground. Swing : cycling the legs between ground contacts. Balance : maintaining body posture. With these three sub-functions, one can understand, design and control legged locomotory systems with formulating them in simpler separated tasks. Coordination between locomotor sub-functions in a harmonized manner appears then as an additional problem when considering legged locomotion. However, biological locomotion shows that appropriate design and control of each sub-function simplifies coordination. It means that only limited exchange of sensory information between the different locomotor sub-function controllers is required enabling the envisioned modular architecture of the locomotion control system. In this paper, we present different studies on implementing different locomotor sub-function controllers on models, robots, and an exoskeleton in addition to demonstrating their abilities in explaining humans' control strategies.

  1. Twitching in sensorimotor development from sleeping rats to robots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blumberg, Mark S; Marques, Hugo Gravato; Iida, Fumiya

    2013-06-17

    It is still not known how the 'rudimentary' movements of fetuses and infants are transformed into the coordinated, flexible and adaptive movements of adults. In addressing this important issue, we consider a behavior that has been perennially viewed as a functionless by-product of a dreaming brain: the jerky limb movements called myoclonic twitches. Recent work has identified the neural mechanisms that produce twitching as well as those that convey sensory feedback from twitching limbs to the spinal cord and brain. In turn, these mechanistic insights have helped inspire new ideas about the functional roles that twitching might play in the self-organization of spinal and supraspinal sensorimotor circuits. Striking support for these ideas is coming from the field of developmental robotics: when twitches are mimicked in robot models of the musculoskeletal system, the basic neural circuitry undergoes self-organization. Mutually inspired biological and synthetic approaches promise not only to produce better robots, but also to solve fundamental problems concerning the developmental origins of sensorimotor maps in the spinal cord and brain. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Automated extraction of DNA from reference samples from various types of biological materials on the Qiagen BioRobot EZ1 Workstation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stangegaard, Michael; Jørgensen, Mads; Hansen, Anders Johannes

    2009-01-01

    , and muscle biopsies. The DNA extraction was validated according to EN/ISO 17025 for the STR kits AmpFlSTR« Identifiler« and AmpFlSTR« Yfiler« (Applied Biosystems). Of 298 samples extracted, 11 (4%) did not yield acceptable results. In conclusion, we have demonstrated that extraction of DNA from various types......We have validated and implemented a protocol for DNA extraction from various types of biological materials using a Qiagen BioRobot EZ1 Workstation. The sample materials included whole blood, blood from deceased, buccal cells on Omni swabs and FTA Cards, blood on FTA Cards and cotton swabs...... of biological material can be performed quickly and without the use of hazardous chemicals, and that the DNA may be successfully STR typed according to the requirements of forensic genetic investigations accredited according to EN/ISO 17025...

  3. Robotics Competitions: An Overview of First© Events and VEX© Competitions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Habib, Maria A.

    2012-01-01

    Robotics competitions generate excitement and raise the profile of a robotics program. This article provides an overview of robotics competitions, concentrating on those sponsored by FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) and RECF (Robotics Education and Competition Foundation). FIRST® LEGO® League and VEX® robotics…

  4. Autonomous Shepherding Behaviors of Multiple Target Steering Robots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wonki Lee

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a distributed coordination methodology for multi-robot systems, based on nearest-neighbor interactions. Among many interesting tasks that may be performed using swarm robots, we propose a biologically-inspired control law for a shepherding task, whereby a group of external agents drives another group of agents to a desired location. First, we generated sheep-like robots that act like a flock. We assume that each agent is capable of measuring the relative location and velocity to each of its neighbors within a limited sensing area. Then, we designed a control strategy for shepherd-like robots that have information regarding where to go and a steering ability to control the flock, according to the robots’ position relative to the flock. We define several independent behavior rules; each agent calculates to what extent it will move by summarizing each rule. The flocking sheep agents detect the steering agents and try to avoid them; this tendency leads to movement of the flock. Each steering agent only needs to focus on guiding the nearest flocking agent to the desired location. Without centralized coordination, multiple steering agents produce an arc formation to control the flock effectively. In addition, we propose a new rule for collecting behavior, whereby a scattered flock or multiple flocks are consolidated. From simulation results with multiple robots, we show that each robot performs actions for the shepherding behavior, and only a few steering agents are needed to control the whole flock. The results are displayed in maps that trace the paths of the flock and steering robots. Performance is evaluated via time cost and path accuracy to demonstrate the effectiveness of this approach.

  5. Robot engineering

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jung, Seul

    2006-02-01

    This book deals with robot engineering, giving descriptions of robot's history, current tendency of robot field, work and characteristic of industrial robot, essential merit and vector, application of matrix, analysis of basic vector, expression of Denavit-Hartenberg, robot kinematics such as forward kinematics, inverse kinematics, cases of MATLAB program, and motion kinematics, robot kinetics like moment of inertia, centrifugal force and coriolis power, and Euler-Lagrangian equation course plan, SIMULINK position control of robots.

  6. Robot engineering

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jung, Seul

    2006-02-15

    This book deals with robot engineering, giving descriptions of robot's history, current tendency of robot field, work and characteristic of industrial robot, essential merit and vector, application of matrix, analysis of basic vector, expression of Denavit-Hartenberg, robot kinematics such as forward kinematics, inverse kinematics, cases of MATLAB program, and motion kinematics, robot kinetics like moment of inertia, centrifugal force and coriolis power, and Euler-Lagrangian equation course plan, SIMULINK position control of robots.

  7. From Soft Sculpture to Soft Robotics: Retracing a Physical Aesthetics of Bio-Morphic Softness

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jørgensen, Jonas

    2017-01-01

    Soft robotics has in the past decade emerged as a growing subfield of technical robotics research, distinguishable by its bio-inspired design strategies, interest in morphological computation, and interdisciplinary combination of insights from engineering, computer science, biology and material...... science. Recently, soft robotics technology has also started to make its way into art, design, and architecture. This paper attempts to think an aesthetics of softness and the life-like through an artistic tradition deeply imbricated with an interrogation of softness and its physical substrates, namely...... the soft sculpture that started proliferating in the late 1960s. Critical descriptions of these works, interestingly, frequently emphasize their similarities with living organisms and bodies as a central tenet of their aesthetics. The paper seeks to articulate aspects of a contiguity between softness...

  8. 2000 FIRST Robotics Competition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Purman, Richard

    2000-01-01

    The New Horizons Regional Education Center (NHREC) in Hampton, VA sought and received NASA funding to support its participation in the 2000 FIRST Robotics competition. FIRST, Inc. (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) is an organization which encourages the application of creative science, math, and computer science principles to solve real-world engineering problems. The FIRST competition is an international engineering contest featuring high school, government, and business partnerships.

  9. Mechanical Description of a Hyper-Redundant Robot Joint Mechanism Used for a Design of a Biomimetic Robotic Fish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. O. Afolayan

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available A biologically inspired robot in the form of fish (mackerel model using rubber (as the biomimetic material for its hyper-redundant joint is presented in this paper. Computerized simulation of the most critical part of the model (the peduncle shows that the rubber joints will be able to take up the stress that will be created. Furthermore, the frequency-induced softening of the rubber used was found to be critical if the joints are going to oscillate at frequency above 25 Hz. The robotic fish was able to attain a speed of 0.985 m/s while the tail beats at a maximum of 1.7 Hz when tested inside water. Furthermore, a minimum turning radius of 0.8 m (approximately 2 times the fish body length was achieved.

  10. Advances in bio-inspired computing for combinatorial optimization problems

    CERN Document Server

    Pintea, Camelia-Mihaela

    2013-01-01

    Advances in Bio-inspired Combinatorial Optimization Problems' illustrates several recent bio-inspired efficient algorithms for solving NP-hard problems.Theoretical bio-inspired concepts and models, in particular for agents, ants and virtual robots are described. Large-scale optimization problems, for example: the Generalized Traveling Salesman Problem and the Railway Traveling Salesman Problem, are solved and their results are discussed.Some of the main concepts and models described in this book are: inner rule to guide ant search - a recent model in ant optimization, heterogeneous sensitive a

  11. FIRST robots compete

    Science.gov (United States)

    2000-01-01

    FIRST teams and their robots work to go through the right motions at the FIRST competition. Students from all over the country are at the KSC Visitor Complex for the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Southeast Regional competition March 9-11 in the Rocket Garden. Teams of high school students are testing the limits of their imagination using robots they have designed, with the support of business and engineering professionals and corporate sponsors, to compete in a technological battle against other schools' robots. Of the 30 high school teams competing, 16 are Florida teams co-sponsored by NASA and KSC contractors. Local high schools participating are Astronaut, Bayside, Cocoa Beach, Eau Gallie, Melbourne, Melbourne Central Catholic, Palm Bay, Rockledge, Satellite, and Titusville.

  12. Environmental contamination by cyclophosphamide preparation: Comparison of conventional manual production in biological safety cabinet and robot-assisted production by APOTECAchemo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schierl, Rudolf; Masini, Carla; Groeneveld, Svenja; Fischer, Elke; Böhlandt, Antje; Rosini, Valeria; Paolucci, Demis

    2016-02-01

    The aim of this study was to compare environmental contamination of cyclophosphamide (CP) during 1 week of drug compounding by conventional manual procedure in a biological safety cabinet (BSC) with laminar airflow and a new robotic drug preparation system (APOTECAchemo). During four consecutive days, similar numbers of infusion bags with cyclophosphamide were prepared with both techniques in a cross-over design. Wipe samples (49 for BSC, 50 for APOTECAchemo) were taken at several locations (gloves, infusion bags, trays, BSC-benches, floor) in the pharmacy and analyzed for CP concentrations by GC-MSMS (LOD 0.2 ng/sample). The detection rate was 70% in the BSC versus 15% in APOTECAchemo. During manual preparation of admixtures using BSC contamination with CP was below 0.001 ng/cm(2) at most locations, but significant on gloves (0.0004-0.0967 ng/cm(2)) and the majority (70%) of infusion bags (preparation by APOTECAchemo, gloves (1 of 8: 0.0007 ng/cm(2)) and infusion bags (3 of 20: 0.0005, 0.0019, 0.0094 ng/cm(2)) were considerably less contaminated. Residual contamination was found on the surfaces under the dosing device in the compounding area (0.0293-0.1603 ng/cm(2)) inside the robotic system. Compared to outcomes of other studies, our results underline good manufacturing procedures in this pharmacy with low contamination for both techniques (BSC and APOTECAchemo). Comparison of both preparation procedures validated that contamination of infusion bags was much lower by using the robotic system. © The Author(s) 2014.

  13. Marrow-isolated adult multilineage inducible cells embedded within a biologically-inspired construct promote recovery in a mouse model of peripheral vascular disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grau-Monge, Cristina; Delcroix, Gaëtan J-R; Bonnin-Marquez, Andrea; Valdes, Mike; Awadallah, Ead Lewis Mazen; Quevedo, Daniel F; Armour, Maxime R; Montero, Ramon B; Schiller, Paul C; Andreopoulos, Fotios M; D'Ippolito, Gianluca

    2017-02-17

    Peripheral vascular disease is one of the major vascular complications in individuals suffering from diabetes and in the elderly that is associated with significant burden in terms of morbidity and mortality. Stem cell therapy is being tested as an attractive alternative to traditional surgery to prevent and treat this disorder. The goal of this study was to enhance the protective and reparative potential of marrow-isolated adult multilineage inducible (MIAMI) cells by incorporating them within a bio-inspired construct (BIC) made of two layers of gelatin B electrospun nanofibers. We hypothesized that the BIC would enhance MIAMI cell survival and engraftment, ultimately leading to a better functional recovery of the injured limb in our mouse model of critical limb ischemia compared to MIAMI cells used alone. Our study demonstrated that MIAMI cell-seeded BIC resulted in a wide range of positive outcomes with an almost full recovery of blood flow in the injured limb, thereby limiting the extent of ischemia and necrosis. Functional recovery was also the greatest when MIAMI cells were combined with BICs, compared to MIAMI cells alone or BICs in the absence of cells. Histology was performed 28 days after grafting the animals to explore the mechanisms at the source of these positive outcomes. We observed that our critical limb ischemia model induces an extensive loss of muscular fibers that are replaced by intermuscular adipose tissue (IMAT), together with a highly disorganized vascular structure. The use of MIAMI cells-seeded BIC prevented IMAT infiltration with some clear evidence of muscular fibers regeneration.

  14. Humanlike Robots - Synthetically Mimicking Humans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph

    2012-01-01

    Nature inspired many inventions and the field of technology that is based on the mimicking or inspiration of nature is widely known as Biomimetics and it is increasingly leading to many new capabilities. There are numerous examples of biomimetic successes including the copying of fins for swimming, and the inspiration of the insects and birds flight. More and more commercial implementations of biomimetics are appearing and behaving lifelike and applications are emerging that are important to our daily life. Making humanlike robots is the ultimate challenge to biomimetics and, for many years, it was considered science fiction, but such robots are becoming an engineering reality. Advances in producing such robot are allowing them to perform impressive functions and tasks. The development of such robots involves addressing many challenges and is raising concerns that are related to fear of their application implications and potential ethical issues. In this paper, the state-of-the-art of humanlike robots, potential applications and challenges will be reviewed.

  15. Emergent adaptive behaviour of GRN-controlled simulated robots in a changing environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yao Yao

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available We developed a bio-inspired robot controller combining an artificial genome with an agent-based control system. The genome encodes a gene regulatory network (GRN that is switched on by environmental cues and, following the rules of transcriptional regulation, provides output signals to actuators. Whereas the genome represents the full encoding of the transcriptional network, the agent-based system mimics the active regulatory network and signal transduction system also present in naturally occurring biological systems. Using such a design that separates the static from the conditionally active part of the gene regulatory network contributes to a better general adaptive behaviour. Here, we have explored the potential of our platform with respect to the evolution of adaptive behaviour, such as preying when food becomes scarce, in a complex and changing environment and show through simulations of swarm robots in an A-life environment that evolution of collective behaviour likely can be attributed to bio-inspired evolutionary processes acting at different levels, from the gene and the genome to the individual robot and robot population.

  16. Emergent adaptive behaviour of GRN-controlled simulated robots in a changing environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Yao; Storme, Veronique; Marchal, Kathleen; Van de Peer, Yves

    2016-01-01

    We developed a bio-inspired robot controller combining an artificial genome with an agent-based control system. The genome encodes a gene regulatory network (GRN) that is switched on by environmental cues and, following the rules of transcriptional regulation, provides output signals to actuators. Whereas the genome represents the full encoding of the transcriptional network, the agent-based system mimics the active regulatory network and signal transduction system also present in naturally occurring biological systems. Using such a design that separates the static from the conditionally active part of the gene regulatory network contributes to a better general adaptive behaviour. Here, we have explored the potential of our platform with respect to the evolution of adaptive behaviour, such as preying when food becomes scarce, in a complex and changing environment and show through simulations of swarm robots in an A-life environment that evolution of collective behaviour likely can be attributed to bio-inspired evolutionary processes acting at different levels, from the gene and the genome to the individual robot and robot population.

  17. Emergent adaptive behaviour of GRN-controlled simulated robots in a changing environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Yao; Storme, Veronique; Marchal, Kathleen

    2016-01-01

    We developed a bio-inspired robot controller combining an artificial genome with an agent-based control system. The genome encodes a gene regulatory network (GRN) that is switched on by environmental cues and, following the rules of transcriptional regulation, provides output signals to actuators. Whereas the genome represents the full encoding of the transcriptional network, the agent-based system mimics the active regulatory network and signal transduction system also present in naturally occurring biological systems. Using such a design that separates the static from the conditionally active part of the gene regulatory network contributes to a better general adaptive behaviour. Here, we have explored the potential of our platform with respect to the evolution of adaptive behaviour, such as preying when food becomes scarce, in a complex and changing environment and show through simulations of swarm robots in an A-life environment that evolution of collective behaviour likely can be attributed to bio-inspired evolutionary processes acting at different levels, from the gene and the genome to the individual robot and robot population. PMID:28028477

  18. Retina-Inspired Filter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doutsi, Effrosyni; Fillatre, Lionel; Antonini, Marc; Gaulmin, Julien

    2018-07-01

    This paper introduces a novel filter, which is inspired by the human retina. The human retina consists of three different layers: the Outer Plexiform Layer (OPL), the inner plexiform layer, and the ganglionic layer. Our inspiration is the linear transform which takes place in the OPL and has been mathematically described by the neuroscientific model "virtual retina." This model is the cornerstone to derive the non-separable spatio-temporal OPL retina-inspired filter, briefly renamed retina-inspired filter, studied in this paper. This filter is connected to the dynamic behavior of the retina, which enables the retina to increase the sharpness of the visual stimulus during filtering before its transmission to the brain. We establish that this retina-inspired transform forms a group of spatio-temporal Weighted Difference of Gaussian (WDoG) filters when it is applied to a still image visible for a given time. We analyze the spatial frequency bandwidth of the retina-inspired filter with respect to time. It is shown that the WDoG spectrum varies from a lowpass filter to a bandpass filter. Therefore, while time increases, the retina-inspired filter enables to extract different kinds of information from the input image. Finally, we discuss the benefits of using the retina-inspired filter in image processing applications such as edge detection and compression.

  19. Clay Bells: Edo Inspiration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagner, Tom

    2010-01-01

    The ceremonial copper and iron bells at the Smithsonian's National Museum of African Art were the author's inspiration for an interdisciplinary unit with a focus on the contributions various cultures make toward the richness of a community. The author of this article describes an Edo bell-inspired ceramic project incorporating slab-building…

  20. Inspiration from britain?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vagnby, Bo

    2008-01-01

    Danish housing policy needs a dose of renewed social concern - and could find new inspiration in Britain's housing and urban planning policies, says Bo Vagnby. Udgivelsesdato: November......Danish housing policy needs a dose of renewed social concern - and could find new inspiration in Britain's housing and urban planning policies, says Bo Vagnby. Udgivelsesdato: November...

  1. A user-friendly robotic sample preparation program for fully automated biological sample pipetting and dilution to benefit the regulated bioanalysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Hao; Ouyang, Zheng; Zeng, Jianing; Yuan, Long; Zheng, Naiyu; Jemal, Mohammed; Arnold, Mark E

    2012-06-01

    Biological sample dilution is a rate-limiting step in bioanalytical sample preparation when the concentrations of samples are beyond standard curve ranges, especially when multiple dilution factors are needed in an analytical run. We have developed and validated a Microsoft Excel-based robotic sample preparation program (RSPP) that automatically transforms Watson worklist sample information (identification, sequence and dilution factor) to comma-separated value (CSV) files. The Freedom EVO liquid handler software imports and transforms the CSV files to executable worklists (.gwl files), allowing the robot to perform sample dilutions at variable dilution factors. The dynamic dilution range is 1- to 1000-fold and divided into three dilution steps: 1- to 10-, 11- to 100-, and 101- to 1000-fold. The whole process, including pipetting samples, diluting samples, and adding internal standard(s), is accomplished within 1 h for two racks of samples (96 samples/rack). This platform also supports online sample extraction (liquid-liquid extraction, solid-phase extraction, protein precipitation, etc.) using 96 multichannel arms. This fully automated and validated sample dilution and preparation process has been applied to several drug development programs. The results demonstrate that application of the RSPP for fully automated sample processing is efficient and rugged. The RSPP not only saved more than 50% of the time in sample pipetting and dilution but also reduced human errors. The generated bioanalytical data are accurate and precise; therefore, this application can be used in regulated bioanalysis.

  2. Plant-inspired adaptive structures and materials for morphing and actuation: a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Suyi; Wang, K W

    2016-12-20

    Plants exhibit a variety of reversible motions, from the slow opening of pine cones to the impulsive closing of Venus flytrap leaves. These motions are achieved without muscles and they have inspired a wide spectrum of engineered materials and structures. This review summarizes the recent developments of plant-inspired adaptive structures and materials for morphing and actuation. We begin with a brief overview of the actuation strategies and physiological features associated to these plant movements, showing that different combinations of these strategies and features can lead to motions with different deformation characteristics and response speeds. Then we offer a comprehensive survey of the plant-inspired morphing and actuation systems, including pressurized cellular structures, osmotic actuation, anisotropic hygroscopic materials, and bistable systems for rapid movements. Although these engineered systems are vastly different in terms of their size scales and intended applications, their working principles are all related to the actuation strategies and physiological features in plants. This review is to promote future cross-disciplinary studies between plant biology and engineering, which can foster new solutions for many applications such as morphing airframes, soft robotics and kinetic architectures.

  3. Testing biological hypotheses with embodied robots: adaptations, accidents, and by-products in the evolution of vertebrates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sonia F Roberts

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Evolutionary robotics allows biologists to test hypotheses about extinct animals. We modeled some of the first vertebrates, jawless fishes, in order to study the evolution of the trait after which vertebrates are named: vertebrae. We tested the hypothesis that vertebrae are an adaptation for enhanced feeding and fleeing performance. We created a population of autonomous embodied robots, Preyro, in which the number of vertebrae, N, were free to evolve. In addition, two other traits, the span of the caudal fin, b, and the predator detection threshold, ζ, a proxy for the lateral line sensory system, were also allowed to evolve. These three traits were chosen because they evolved early in vertebrates, are all potentially important in feeding and fleeing, and vary in form among species. Preyro took on individual identities in a given generation as defined by the population’s six diploid genotypes, Gi. Each Gi was a 3-tuple, with each element an integer specifying N, b, and, ζ. The small size of the population allowed for genetic drift to operate in concert with random mutation and mating; the presence of these mechanisms of chance provided an opportunity for N to evolve by accident. The presence of three evolvable traits provided an opportunity for direct selection on b and/or ζ to evolve N as a by-product linked trait correlation. In selection trials, different Gi embodied in Preyro attempted to feed at a light source and then flee to avoid a predator robot in pursuit. The fitness of each Gi was calculated from five different types of performance: speed, acceleration, distance to the light, distance to the predator, and the number of predator escapes initiated. In each generation, we measured the selection differential, the selection gradient, the strength of chance, and the indirect correlation selection gradient. These metrics allowed us to understand the relative contributions of the three mechanisms: direct selection, chance, and indirect

  4. Fish-robot interactions in a free-swimming environment: Effects of speed and configuration of robots on live fish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butail, Sachit; Polverino, Giovanni; Phamduy, Paul; Del Sette, Fausto; Porfiri, Maurizio

    2014-03-01

    We explore fish-robot interactions in a comprehensive set of experiments designed to highlight the effects of speed and configuration of bioinspired robots on live zebrafish. The robot design and movement is inspired by salient features of attraction in zebrafish and includes enhanced coloration, aspect ratio of a fertile female, and carangiform/subcarangiformlocomotion. The robots are autonomously controlled to swim in circular trajectories in the presence of live fish. Our results indicate that robot configuration significantly affects both the fish distance to the robots and the time spent near them.

  5. Evolutionary Robotics: What, Why, and Where to

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephane eDoncieux

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Evolutionary robotics applies the selection, variation, and heredity principles of natural evolution to the design of robots with embodied intelligence. It can be considered as a subfield of robotics that aims to create more robust and adaptive robots. A pivotal feature of the evolutionary approach is that it considers the whole robot at once, and enables the exploitation of robot features in a holistic manner. Evolutionary robotics can also be seen as an innovative approach to the study of evolution based on a new kind of experimentalism. The use of robots as a substrate can help address questions that are difficult, if not impossible, to investigate through computer simulations or biological studies. In this paper we consider the main achievements of evolutionary robotics, focusing particularly on its contributions to both engineering and biology. We briefly elaborate on methodological issues, review some of the most interesting findings, and discuss important open issues and promising avenues for future work.

  6. Neuroscience-Inspired Artificial Intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hassabis, Demis; Kumaran, Dharshan; Summerfield, Christopher; Botvinick, Matthew

    2017-07-19

    The fields of neuroscience and artificial intelligence (AI) have a long and intertwined history. In more recent times, however, communication and collaboration between the two fields has become less commonplace. In this article, we argue that better understanding biological brains could play a vital role in building intelligent machines. We survey historical interactions between the AI and neuroscience fields and emphasize current advances in AI that have been inspired by the study of neural computation in humans and other animals. We conclude by highlighting shared themes that may be key for advancing future research in both fields. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  7. Performance analysis of jump-gliding locomotion for miniature robotics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vidyasagar, A; Zufferey, Jean-Christohphe; Floreano, Dario; Kovač, M

    2015-03-26

    Recent work suggests that jumping locomotion in combination with a gliding phase can be used as an effective mobility principle in robotics. Compared to pure jumping without a gliding phase, the potential benefits of hybrid jump-gliding locomotion includes the ability to extend the distance travelled and reduce the potentially damaging impact forces upon landing. This publication evaluates the performance of jump-gliding locomotion and provides models for the analysis of the relevant dynamics of flight. It also defines a jump-gliding envelope that encompasses the range that can be achieved with jump-gliding robots and that can be used to evaluate the performance and improvement potential of jump-gliding robots. We present first a planar dynamic model and then a simplified closed form model, which allow for quantification of the distance travelled and the impact energy on landing. In order to validate the prediction of these models, we validate the model with experiments using a novel jump-gliding robot, named the 'EPFL jump-glider'. It has a mass of 16.5 g and is able to perform jumps from elevated positions, perform steered gliding flight, land safely and traverse on the ground by repetitive jumping. The experiments indicate that the developed jump-gliding model fits very well with the measured flight data using the EPFL jump-glider, confirming the benefits of jump-gliding locomotion to mobile robotics. The jump-glide envelope considerations indicate that the EPFL jump-glider, when traversing from a 2 m height, reaches 74.3% of optimal jump-gliding distance compared to pure jumping without a gliding phase which only reaches 33.4% of the optimal jump-gliding distance. Methods of further improving flight performance based on the models and inspiration from biological systems are presented providing mechanical design pathways to future jump-gliding robot designs.

  8. Sociable mobile robots through self-maintained energy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ngo, Trung Dung; Schiøler, Henrik

    2006-01-01

    society, collecting and sharing are experimentally recognized as the highest property. This paper issues an approach to sociable robots using self-maintained energy in robot society, which is naturally inspired from swarm behavior of honey-bee and ant. Typically, autonomous mobile robots are usually......Research of sociable robots has emphasized interaction and coordination of mobile robots with inspiration from natural behavior of birds, insects, and fish: flocking, foraging, collecting, sharing and so forth. However, the animal behaviors are looking for food towards survival. In an animal...... equipped with a finite energy, thus they can operate in a finite time. To overcome the limitation, we describe practical deployment of a group of mobile robot with the possibility of carrying and exchanging fuel, e.g. battery to other robots. Early implementation that includes modular hardware and control...

  9. Probabilistic approaches to robotic perception

    CERN Document Server

    Ferreira, João Filipe

    2014-01-01

    This book tries to address the following questions: How should the uncertainty and incompleteness inherent to sensing the environment be represented and modelled in a way that will increase the autonomy of a robot? How should a robotic system perceive, infer, decide and act efficiently? These are two of the challenging questions robotics community and robotic researchers have been facing. The development of robotic domain by the 1980s spurred the convergence of automation to autonomy, and the field of robotics has consequently converged towards the field of artificial intelligence (AI). Since the end of that decade, the general public’s imagination has been stimulated by high expectations on autonomy, where AI and robotics try to solve difficult cognitive problems through algorithms developed from either philosophical and anthropological conjectures or incomplete notions of cognitive reasoning. Many of these developments do not unveil even a few of the processes through which biological organisms solve thes...

  10. Evolutionary robotics

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    In evolutionary robotics, a suitable robot control system is developed automatically through evolution due to the interactions between the robot and its environment. It is a complicated task, as the robot and the environment constitute a highly dynamical system. Several methods have been tried by various investigators to ...

  11. Robot Aesthetics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jochum, Elizabeth Ann; Putnam, Lance Jonathan

    This paper considers art-based research practice in robotics through a discussion of our course and relevant research projects in autonomous art. The undergraduate course integrates basic concepts of computer science, robotic art, live performance and aesthetic theory. Through practice...... in robotics research (such as aesthetics, culture and perception), we believe robot aesthetics is an important area for research in contemporary aesthetics....

  12. Filigree Robotics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tamke, Martin; Evers, Henrik Leander; Clausen Nørgaard, Esben

    2016-01-01

    Filigree Robotics experiments with the combination of traditional ceramic craft with robotic fabrication in order to generate a new narrative of fine three-dimensional ceramic ornament for architecture.......Filigree Robotics experiments with the combination of traditional ceramic craft with robotic fabrication in order to generate a new narrative of fine three-dimensional ceramic ornament for architecture....

  13. Working hard to make a simple definition of synergies. Comment on: "Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands" by Marco Santello et al.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alessandro, Cristiano; Oliveira Barroso, Filipe; Tresch, Matthew

    2016-07-01

    The paper ;Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands; [1] presents a comprehensive review of the work carried out as part of the EU funded project ;The Hand Embodied;. The work uses the concept of ;synergy; to study the neuromuscular control of the human hand and to design novel robotics systems. The project has been very productive and has made important contributions. We are therefore confident that it will lead to further advancements and experiments in the future.

  14. Physicists get INSPIREd

    CERN Multimedia

    CERN Bulletin

    2010-01-01

    Particle physicists thrive on information. They first create information by performing experiments or elaborating theoretical conjectures and then they share it through publications and various web tools. The INSPIRE service, just released, will bring state of the art information retrieval to the fingertips of researchers.   Keeping track of the information shared within the particle physics community has long been the task of libraries at the larger labs, such as CERN, DESY, Fermilab and SLAC, as well as the focus of indispensible services like arXiv and those of the Particle Data Group. In 2007, many providers of information in the field came together for a summit at SLAC to see how physics information resources could be enhanced, and the INSPIRE project emerged from that meeting. The vision behind INSPIRE was built by a survey launched by the four labs to evaluate the real needs of the community. INSPIRE responds to these directives from the community by combining the most successful aspe...

  15. Buckling Pneumatic Linear Actuators Inspired by Muscle

    OpenAIRE

    Yang, Dian; Verma, Mohit Singh; So, Ju-Hee; Mosadegh, Bobak; Keplinger, Christoph; Lee, Benjamin; Khashai, Fatemeh; Lossner, Elton Garret; Suo, Zhigang; Whitesides, George McClelland

    2016-01-01

    The mechanical features of biological muscles are difficult to reproduce completely in synthetic systems. A new class of soft pneumatic structures (vacuum-actuated muscle-inspired pneumatic structures) is described that combines actuation by negative pressure (vacuum), with cooperative buckling of beams fabricated in a slab of elastomer, to achieve motion and demonstrate many features that are similar to that of mammalian muscle.

  16. Human Hand Motion Analysis and Synthesis of Optimal Power Grasps for a Robotic Hand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francesca Cordella

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Biologically inspired robotic systems can find important applications in biomedical robotics, since studying and replicating human behaviour can provide new insights into motor recovery, functional substitution and human-robot interaction. The analysis of human hand motion is essential for collecting information about human hand movements useful for generalizing reaching and grasping actions on a robotic system. This paper focuses on the definition and extraction of quantitative indicators for describing optimal hand grasping postures and replicating them on an anthropomorphic robotic hand. A motion analysis has been carried out on six healthy human subjects performing a transverse volar grasp. The extracted indicators point to invariant grasping behaviours between the involved subjects, thus providing some constraints for identifying the optimal grasping configuration. Hence, an optimization algorithm based on the Nelder-Mead simplex method has been developed for determining the optimal grasp configuration of a robotic hand, grounded on the aforementioned constraints. It is characterized by a reduced computational cost. The grasp stability has been tested by introducing a quality index that satisfies the form-closure property. The grasping strategy has been validated by means of simulation tests and experimental trials on an arm-hand robotic system. The obtained results have shown the effectiveness of the extracted indicators to reduce the non-linear optimization problem complexity and lead to the synthesis of a grasping posture able to replicate the human behaviour while ensuring grasp stability. The experimental results have also highlighted the limitations of the adopted robotic platform (mainly due to the mechanical structure to achieve the optimal grasp configuration.

  17. Use of Magnetic Bead Resin and Automated Liquid Handler Extraction Methods to Robotically Isolate Nucleic Acids of Biological Agent Simulates

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Seegar, Tom

    2003-01-01

    The events that occurred following the mailing of Bacillus anthracis-laced envelopes through the postal system highlight the need to perform biological screening on large numbers of environmental samples...

  18. Locomotor Sub-functions for Control of Assistive Wearable Robots

    OpenAIRE

    Sharbafi, Maziar A.; Seyfarth, Andre; Zhao, Guoping

    2017-01-01

    A primary goal of comparative biomechanics is to understand the fundamental physics of locomotion within an evolutionary context. Such an understanding of legged locomotion results in a transition from copying nature to borrowing strategies for interacting with the physical world regarding design and control of bio-inspired legged robots or robotic assistive devices. Inspired from nature, legged locomotion can be composed of three locomotor sub-functions, which are intrinsically interrelated:...

  19. Mergeable nervous systems for robots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mathews, Nithin; Christensen, Anders Lyhne; O'Grady, Rehan; Mondada, Francesco; Dorigo, Marco

    2017-09-12

    Robots have the potential to display a higher degree of lifetime morphological adaptation than natural organisms. By adopting a modular approach, robots with different capabilities, shapes, and sizes could, in theory, construct and reconfigure themselves as required. However, current modular robots have only been able to display a limited range of hardwired behaviors because they rely solely on distributed control. Here, we present robots whose bodies and control systems can merge to form entirely new robots that retain full sensorimotor control. Our control paradigm enables robots to exhibit properties that go beyond those of any existing machine or of any biological organism: the robots we present can merge to form larger bodies with a single centralized controller, split into separate bodies with independent controllers, and self-heal by removing or replacing malfunctioning body parts. This work takes us closer to robots that can autonomously change their size, form and function.Robots that can self-assemble into different morphologies are desired to perform tasks that require different physical capabilities. Mathews et al. design robots whose bodies and control systems can merge and split to form new robots that retain full sensorimotor control and act as a single entity.

  20. Swarming Robot Design, Construction and Software Implementation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stolleis, Karl A.

    2014-01-01

    In this paper is presented an overview of the hardware design, construction overview, software design and software implementation for a small, low-cost robot to be used for swarming robot development. In addition to the work done on the robot, a full simulation of the robotic system was developed using Robot Operating System (ROS) and its associated simulation. The eventual use of the robots will be exploration of evolving behaviors via genetic algorithms and builds on the work done at the University of New Mexico Biological Computation Lab.

  1. Interface evaluation for soft robotic manipulators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Kristin S.; Rodes, William M.; Csencsits, Matthew A.; Kwoka, Martha J.; Gomer, Joshua A.; Pagano, Christopher C.

    2006-05-01

    The results of two usability experiments evaluating an interface for the operation of OctArm, a biologically inspired robotic arm modeled after an octopus tentacle, are reported. Due to the many degrees-of-freedom (DOF) for the operator to control, such 'continuum' robotic limbs provide unique challenges for human operators because they do not map intuitively. Two modes have been developed to control the arm and reduce the DOF under the explicit direction of the operator. In coupled velocity (CV) mode, a joystick controls changes in arm curvature. In end-effector (EE) mode, a joystick controls the arm by moving the position of an endpoint along a straight line. In Experiment 1, participants used the two modes to grasp objects placed at different locations in a virtual reality modeling language (VRML). Objective measures of performance and subjective preferences were recorded. Results revealed lower grasp times and a subjective preference for the CV mode. Recommendations for improving the interface included providing additional feedback and implementation of an error recovery function. In Experiment 2, only the CV mode was tested with improved training of participants and several changes to the interface. The error recovery function was implemented, allowing participants to reverse through previously attained positions. The mean time to complete the trials in the second usability test was reduced by more than 4 minutes compared with the first usability test, confirming the interface changes improved performance. The results of these tests will be incorporated into future versions of the arm and improve future usability tests.

  2. Insect-Inspired Flight Control for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thakoor, Sarita; Stange, G.; Srinivasan, M.; Chahl, Javaan; Hine, Butler; Zornetzer, Steven

    2005-01-01

    Flight-control and navigation systems inspired by the structure and function of the visual system and brain of insects have been proposed for a class of developmental miniature robotic aircraft called "biomorphic flyers" described earlier in "Development of Biomorphic Flyers" (NPO-30554), NASA Tech Briefs, Vol. 28, No. 11 (November 2004), page 54. These form a subset of biomorphic explorers, which, as reported in several articles in past issues of NASA Tech Briefs ["Biomorphic Explorers" (NPO-20142), Vol. 22, No. 9 (September 1998), page 71; "Bio-Inspired Engineering of Exploration Systems" (NPO-21142), Vol. 27, No. 5 (May 2003), page 54; and "Cooperative Lander-Surface/Aerial Microflyer Missions for Mars Exploration" (NPO-30286), Vol. 28, No. 5 (May 2004), page 36], are proposed small robots, equipped with microsensors and communication systems, that would incorporate crucial functions of mobility, adaptability, and even cooperative behavior. These functions are inherent to biological organisms but are challenging frontiers for technical systems. Biomorphic flyers could be used on Earth or remote planets to explore otherwise difficult or impossible to reach sites. An example of an exploratory task of search/surveillance functions currently being tested is to obtain high-resolution aerial imagery, using a variety of miniaturized electronic cameras. The control functions to be implemented by the systems in development include holding altitude, avoiding hazards, following terrain, navigation by reference to recognizable terrain features, stabilization of flight, and smooth landing. Flying insects perform these and other functions remarkably well, even though insect brains contains fewer than 10(exp -4) as many neurons as does the human brain. Although most insects have immobile, fixed-focus eyes and lack stereoscopy (and hence cannot perceive depth directly), they utilize a number of ingenious strategies for perceiving, and navigating in, three dimensions. Despite

  3. Intelligent robot trends for 1998

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Ernest L.

    1998-10-01

    An intelligent robot is a remarkably useful combination of a manipulator, sensors and controls. The use of these machines in factory automation can improve productivity, increase product quality and improve competitiveness. This paper presents a discussion of recent technical and economic trends. Technically, the machines are faster, cheaper, more repeatable, more reliable and safer. The knowledge base of inverse kinematic and dynamic solutions and intelligent controls is increasing. More attention is being given by industry to robots, vision and motion controls. New areas of usage are emerging for service robots, remote manipulators and automated guided vehicles. Economically, the robotics industry now has a 1.1 billion-dollar market in the U.S. and is growing. Feasibility studies results are presented which also show decreasing costs for robots and unaudited healthy rates of return for a variety of robotic applications. However, the road from inspiration to successful application can be long and difficult, often taking decades to achieve a new product. A greater emphasis on mechatronics is needed in our universities. Certainly, more cooperation between government, industry and universities is needed to speed the development of intelligent robots that will benefit industry and society.

  4. Design and Control of Compliant Tensegrity Robots Through Simulation and Hardware Validation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caluwaerts, Ken; Despraz, Jeremie; Iscen, Atil; Sabelhaus, Andrew P.; Bruce, Jonathan; Schrauwen, Benjamin; Sunspiral, Vytas

    2014-01-01

    To better understand the role of tensegrity structures in biological systems and their application to robotics, the Dynamic Tensegrity Robotics Lab at NASA Ames Research Center has developed and validated two different software environments for the analysis, simulation, and design of tensegrity robots. These tools, along with new control methodologies and the modular hardware components developed to validate them, are presented as a system for the design of actuated tensegrity structures. As evidenced from their appearance in many biological systems, tensegrity ("tensile-integrity") structures have unique physical properties which make them ideal for interaction with uncertain environments. Yet these characteristics, such as variable structural compliance, and global multi-path load distribution through the tension network, make design and control of bio-inspired tensegrity robots extremely challenging. This work presents the progress in using these two tools in tackling the design and control challenges. The results of this analysis includes multiple novel control approaches for mobility and terrain interaction of spherical tensegrity structures. The current hardware prototype of a six-bar tensegrity, code-named ReCTeR, is presented in the context of this validation.

  5. Mechanism design and optimization of a bionic kangaroo jumping robot

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Y. H.; Zheng, L.; Ge, W. J.; Zou, Z. H.

    2018-03-01

    Hopping robots have broad application prospects in the fields of military reconnaissance, field search or life rescue. However, current hopping robots still face the problems of weak jumping ability and load bearing. Inspired by the jumping of kangaroo, we design a Kangaroo hopping robot “Zbot”, which has two degrees of freedom and three joints. The geared five-bar mechanism is used to decouple the knee and ankle joints of the robot. In order to get a bionic performance, the coupling mechanism parameters are optimized. The simulation and experiments show that the robot has an excellent jumping ability and load capacity.

  6. Mechanical design for a hydraulically actuated quadruped robot

    OpenAIRE

    Erkekli, Koray

    2017-01-01

    Considerable amount of research efforts are spent on the field of legged robotics in the past 60 years. Studies in this area extend from running on one leg to humanoid robots, from four legged robots (quadruped) to multi-legged bug-inspired robots. The advantage of four legged structure is that it is more balanced compared structures with less legs. This feature makes four legged robots candidates rough terrain conditions and for dangerous tasks. Because of the high power-to-weight ratio and ...

  7. Robotics Competitions: The Choice Is up to You!

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Richard T.; Londt, Susan E.

    2010-01-01

    Competitive robotics as an interactive experience can increase the level of student participation in technology education, inspire students to consider careers in technical fields, and enhance the visibility of technology education programs. Implemented correctly, a competitive robotics program can provide a stimulating learning environment for…

  8. Learning from nature: Nature-inspired algorithms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Albeanu, Grigore; Madsen, Henrik; Popentiu-Vladicescu, Florin

    2016-01-01

    .), genetic and evolutionary strategies, artificial immune systems etc. Well-known examples of applications include: aircraft wing design, wind turbine design, bionic car, bullet train, optimal decisions related to traffic, appropriate strategies to survive under a well-adapted immune system etc. Based......During last decade, the nature has inspired researchers to develop new algorithms. The largest collection of nature-inspired algorithms is biology-inspired: swarm intelligence (particle swarm optimization, ant colony optimization, cuckoo search, bees' algorithm, bat algorithm, firefly algorithm etc...... on collective social behaviour of organisms, researchers have developed optimization strategies taking into account not only the individuals, but also groups and environment. However, learning from nature, new classes of approaches can be identified, tested and compared against already available algorithms...

  9. Robotic environments

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bier, H.H.

    2011-01-01

    Technological and conceptual advances in fields such as artificial intelligence, robotics, and material science have enabled robotic architectural environments to be implemented and tested in the last decade in virtual and physical prototypes. These prototypes are incorporating sensing-actuating

  10. Healthcare Robotics

    OpenAIRE

    Riek, Laurel D.

    2017-01-01

    Robots have the potential to be a game changer in healthcare: improving health and well-being, filling care gaps, supporting care givers, and aiding health care workers. However, before robots are able to be widely deployed, it is crucial that both the research and industrial communities work together to establish a strong evidence-base for healthcare robotics, and surmount likely adoption barriers. This article presents a broad contextualization of robots in healthcare by identifying key sta...

  11. Thulium fiber laser for the use in low-invasive endoscopic and robotic surgery of soft biological tissues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michalska, M.; Brojek, W.; Rybak, Z.; Sznelewski, P.; Mamajek, M.; Gogler, S.; Swiderski, J.

    2016-12-01

    An all-fiber, diode-pumped, continuous-wave Tm3+-doped fiber laser operated at a wavelength of 1.94 μm was developed. 37.4 W of output power with a slope efficiency as high as 57% with respect to absorbed pump power at 790 nm was demonstrated. The laser output beam quality factor M2 was measured to be 1.2. The output beam was very stable with power fluctuations surgery of soft biological tissues.

  12. Distance-Based Behaviors for Low-Complexity Control in Multiagent Robotics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pierpaoli, Pietro

    Several biological examples show that living organisms cooperate to collectively accomplish tasks impossible for single individuals. More importantly, this coordination is often achieved with a very limited set of information. Inspired by these observations, research on autonomous systems has focused on the development of distributed control techniques for control and guidance of groups of autonomous mobile agents, or robots. From an engineering perspective, when coordination and cooperation is sought in large ensembles of robotic vehicles, a reduction in hardware and algorithms' complexity becomes mandatory from the very early stages of the project design. The research for solutions capable of lowering power consumption, cost and increasing reliability are thus worth investigating. In this work, we studied low-complexity techniques to achieve cohesion and control on swarms of autonomous robots. Starting from an inspiring example with two-agents, we introduced effects of neighbors' relative positions on control of an autonomous agent. The extension of this intuition addressed the control of large ensembles of autonomous vehicles, and was applied in the form of a herding-like technique. To this end, a low-complexity distance-based aggregation protocol was defined. We first showed that our protocol produced a cohesion aggregation among the agent while avoiding inter-agent collisions. Then, a feedback leader-follower architecture was introduced for the control of the swarm. We also described how proximity measures and probability of collisions with neighbors can also be used as source of information in highly populated environments.

  13. Industrial Robots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reed, Dean; Harden, Thomas K.

    Robots are mechanical devices that can be programmed to perform some task of manipulation or locomotion under automatic control. This paper discusses: (1) early developments of the robotics industry in the United States; (2) the present structure of the industry; (3) noneconomic factors related to the use of robots; (4) labor considerations…

  14. Inspirations in medical genetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asadollahi, Reza

    2016-02-01

    There are abundant instances in the history of genetics and medical genetics to illustrate how curiosity, charisma of mentors, nature, art, the saving of lives and many other matters have inspired great discoveries. These achievements from deciphering genetic concepts to characterizing genetic disorders have been crucial for management of the patients. There remains, however, a long pathway ahead. © The Author(s) 2014.

  15. Nature as Inspiration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tank, Kristina; Moore, Tamara; Strnat, Meg

    2015-01-01

    This article describes the final lesson within a seven-day STEM and literacy unit that is part of the Picture STEM curriculum (pictureSTEM. org) and uses engineering to integrate science and mathematics learning in a meaningful way (Tank and Moore 2013). For this engineering challenge, students used nature as a source of inspiration for designs to…

  16. Ndebele Inspired Houses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rice, Nicole

    2012-01-01

    The house paintings of the South African Ndebele people are more than just an attempt to improve the aesthetics of a community; they are a source of identity and significance for Ndebele women. In this article, the author describes an art project wherein students use the tradition of Ndebele house painting as inspiration for creating their own…

  17. Biologically inspired technologies using artificial muscles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph

    2005-01-01

    One of the newest fields of biomimetics is the electroactive polymers (EAP) that are also known as artificial muscles. To take advantage of these materials, efforts are made worldwide to establish a strong infrastructure addressing the need for comprehensive analytical modeling of their response mechanism and develop effective processing and characterization techniques. The field is still in its emerging state and robust materials are still not readily available however in recent years significant progress has been made and commercial products have already started to appear. This paper covers the current state of- the-art and challenges to making artificial muscles and their potential biomimetic applications.

  18. Biological Inspiration for Agile Autonomous Air Vehicles

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Evers, Johnny H

    2007-01-01

    .... Flying animals exhibit capabilities for aerial acrobatics, insensitivity to wind gusts, avoiding collision with or intercepting fixed and moving objects, landing and take off from small perches...

  19. A Biologically Inspired Learning to Grasp System

    Science.gov (United States)

    2001-10-25

    possible extensive discussions of data on the premotor cortex and monkey grasping circuit with Giacomo Rizzolatti , Vittorio Gallese, to whom we express...premotor specialisation for the different types of grasps that Rizzolatti group [3] has found be formed at this age yet. Infants will need to...our gratitude. REFERENCES [1] M. Jeannerod, M.A. Arbib, G. Rizzolatti , H. Sakata, “Grasping objects: the cortical mechanisms of visuomotor

  20. Project Summary: Biology-Inspired Autonomous Control

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-02-01

    pp. 644–650, 2005. [4] L. Dugatkin, Cheating monkeys and citizen bees : the nature of cooperation in animals and humans. Simon and Shuster, 1999. [5] L...varied behavioral American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics 7 repertoires. Many of the animal extinctions of the past few centuries

  1. Learning from nature : Biologically-inspired sensors

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wicaksono, D.H.B.

    2008-01-01

    New emerging sensing applications demand novel sensors in micro-/nano-scale to enable integration and embedding into higher level structures or systems. Downsizing the structure will usually decrease the sensitivity of the sensors, since the sensitivity is a function of geometrical parameters, e.g.

  2. Music Information Retrieval Using Biologically Inspired Techniques

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bountouridis, D.

    2018-01-01

    The computational modeling of our perception of music similarity is an intricate, unsolved problem with various practical applications. Many of the current approaches aim at solving it by employing heuristics, such as expert intuition or music theory, which limit their application to narrow

  3. Biologically inspired hairy surfaces for liquid repellency

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsu, Shu-Hau

    Owing to remarkable features, such as self-cleaning, anti-biofouling and drag reduction, interest on rendering surfaces water-repellent has significantly grown within this decade. Attempts on making surfaces "superhydrophobic", where high water contact angle (θc >150°) accompanied with only few degrees of roll-off angle, have been extensively demonstrated through the mimicking of the surface chemistry and morphology of lotus leaves. This appealing phenomenon also exists on another structure from nature: surfaces comprising soft hairs. Although the role of this piliferous integument has long been recognized for providing life, arthropods in particular, waterrepellency, the synthetic superhydrophobic surfaces based on this structure are still very limited. In this study, the goal was to develop a novel liquid-repellent surface by mimicking the hairy exterior of species. The artificial hairy surfaces were prepared by means of pressurized membrane casting, in which thermoplastic sheets were forced to flow into porous membranes at elevated temperature. The G-shaped pillars on the membrane cast polypropylene substrate are particularly similar to the conformation of natural hairs. The principle of this fabrication technique is relatively accessible and is expected to be compatible with large-area fabrication of superhydrophobic interfaces. The artificial hairy surface features perfectly hydrophobic response where no contact angle hysteresis was observed from video assessment. Thus the artificial hairy surface of the current work appears to be the first report to have such extreme hydrophobicity with only structural modification from the original substrate. This ultralow adhesion to water droplet is believed to be attributed to the hydrophobic methyl groups and the mechanical response of the artificial hairs. Liquid repellency of the hairy surfaces was further enhanced by coating with fluorocarbon (CF) layers via deep reactive ion etching (DRIE). The contact angle of water-methanol mixture (gamma < 35.2 mN/m) was raised from 60° to around 140°. The surface energy of coated samples, however, was still not low enough to repel non-polar liquids. Moreover, the hairy structure is not favorable for maintaining the low surface tension liquid in Cassie-Baxter state.

  4. Biologically inspired rate control of chaos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olde Scheper, Tjeerd V

    2017-10-01

    The overall intention of chaotic control is to eliminate chaos and to force the system to become stable in the classical sense. In this paper, I demonstrate a more subtle method that does not eliminate all traces of chaotic behaviour; yet it consistently, and reliably, can provide control as intended. The Rate Control of Chaos (RCC) method is derived from metabolic control processes and has several remarkable properties. RCC can control complex systems continuously, and unsupervised, it can also maintain control across bifurcations, and in the presence of significant systemic noise. Specifically, I show that RCC can control a typical set of chaotic models, including the 3 and 4 dimensional chaotic Lorenz systems, in all modes. Furthermore, it is capable of controlling spatiotemporal chaos without supervision and maintains control of the system across bifurcations. This property of RCC allows a dynamic system to operate in parameter spaces that are difficult to control otherwise. This may be particularly interesting for the control of forced systems or dynamic systems that are chaotically perturbed. These control properties of RCC are applicable to a range of dynamic systems, thereby appearing to have far-reaching effects beyond just controlling chaos. RCC may also point to the existence of a biochemical control function of an enzyme, to stabilise the dynamics of the reaction cascade.

  5. Trusted computation through biologically inspired processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Gustave W.

    2013-05-01

    Due to supply chain threats it is no longer a reasonable assumption that traditional protections alone will provide sufficient security for enterprise systems. The proposed cognitive trust model architecture extends the state-of-the-art in enterprise anti-exploitation technologies by providing collective immunity through backup and cross-checking, proactive health monitoring and adaptive/autonomic threat response, and network resource diversity.

  6. Biologically inspired optimization methods an introduction

    CERN Document Server

    Wahde, M

    2008-01-01

    The advent of rapid, reliable and cheap computing power over the last decades has transformed many, if not most, fields of science and engineering. The multidisciplinary field of optimization is no exception. First of all, with fast computers, researchers and engineers can apply classical optimization methods to problems of larger and larger size. In addition, however, researchers have developed a host of new optimization algorithms that operate in a rather different way than the classical ones, and that allow practitioners to attack optimization problems where the classical methods are either not applicable or simply too costly (in terms of time and other resources) to apply.This book is intended as a course book for introductory courses in stochastic optimization algorithms (in this book, the terms optimization method and optimization algorithm will be used interchangeably), and it has grown from a set of lectures notes used in courses, taught by the author, at the international master programme Complex Ada...

  7. 24th International Conference on Robotics in Alpe-Adria-Danube Region

    CERN Document Server

    2016-01-01

    This volume includes the Proceedings of the 24th International Conference on Robotics in Alpe-Adria-Danube Region, RAAD 2015, which was held in Bucharest, Romania, on May 27-29, 2015. The Conference brought together academic and industry researchers in robotics from the 11 countries affiliated to the Alpe-Adria-Danube space: Austria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia and Slovenia, and their worldwide partners. According to its tradition, RAAD 2015 covered all important areas of research, development and innovation in robotics, including new trends such as: bio-inspired and cognitive robots, visual servoing of robot motion, human-robot interaction, and personal robots for ambient assisted living. The accepted papers have been grouped in nine sessions: Robot integration in industrial applications; Grasping analysis, dexterous grippers and component design; Advanced robot motion control; Robot vision and sensory control; Human-robot interaction and collaboration;...

  8. Robot Mechanisms

    CERN Document Server

    Lenarcic, Jadran; Stanišić, Michael M

    2013-01-01

    This book provides a comprehensive introduction to the area of robot mechanisms, primarily considering industrial manipulators and humanoid arms. The book is intended for both teaching and self-study. Emphasis is given to the fundamentals of kinematic analysis and the design of robot mechanisms. The coverage of topics is untypical. The focus is on robot kinematics. The book creates a balance between theoretical and practical aspects in the development and application of robot mechanisms, and includes the latest achievements and trends in robot science and technology.

  9. Self-Organizing Robots

    CERN Document Server

    Murata, Satoshi

    2012-01-01

    It is man’s ongoing hope that a machine could somehow adapt to its environment by reorganizing itself. This is what the notion of self-organizing robots is based on. The theme of this book is to examine the feasibility of creating such robots within the limitations of current mechanical engineering. The topics comprise the following aspects of such a pursuit: the philosophy of design of self-organizing mechanical systems; self-organization in biological systems; the history of self-organizing mechanical systems; a case study of a self-assembling/self-repairing system as an autonomous distributed system; a self-organizing robot that can create its own shape and robotic motion; implementation and instrumentation of self-organizing robots; and the future of self-organizing robots. All topics are illustrated with many up-to-date examples, including those from the authors’ own work. The book does not require advanced knowledge of mathematics to be understood, and will be of great benefit to students in the rob...

  10. Robot Futures

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christoffersen, Anja; Grindsted Nielsen, Sally; Jochum, Elizabeth Ann

    Robots are increasingly used in health care settings, e.g., as homecare assistants and personal companions. One challenge for personal robots in the home is acceptance. We describe an innovative approach to influencing the acceptance of care robots using theatrical performance. Live performance...... is a useful testbed for developing and evaluating what makes robots expressive; it is also a useful platform for designing robot behaviors and dialogue that result in believable characters. Therefore theatre is a valuable testbed for studying human-robot interaction (HRI). We investigate how audiences...... perceive social robots interacting with humans in a future care scenario through a scripted performance. We discuss our methods and initial findings, and outline future work....

  11. Robotics education

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Benton, O.

    1984-01-01

    Robotics education courses are rapidly spreading throughout the nation's colleges and universities. Engineering schools are offering robotics courses as part of their mechanical or manufacturing engineering degree program. Two year colleges are developing an Associate Degree in robotics. In addition to regular courses, colleges are offering seminars in robotics and related fields. These seminars draw excellent participation at costs running up to $200 per day for each participant. The last one drew 275 people from Texas to Virginia. Seminars are also offered by trade associations, private consulting firms, and robot vendors. IBM, for example, has the Robotic Assembly Institute in Boca Raton and charges about $1,000 per week for course. This is basically for owners of IBM robots. Education (and training) can be as short as one day or as long as two years. Here is the educational pattern that is developing now

  12. Snake Robots Modelling, Mechatronics, and Control

    CERN Document Server

    Liljebäck, Pål; Stavdahl, Øyvind; Gravdahl, Jan Tommy

    2013-01-01

    Snake Robots is a novel treatment of theoretical and practical topics related to snake robots: robotic mechanisms designed to move like biological snakes and able to operate in challenging environments in which human presence is either undesirable or impossible. Future applications of such robots include search and rescue, inspection and maintenance, and subsea operations. Locomotion in unstructured environments is a focus for this book. The text targets the disparate muddle of approaches to modelling, development and control of snake robots in current literature, giving a unified presentation of recent research results on snake robot locomotion to increase the reader’s basic understanding of these mechanisms and their motion dynamics and clarify the state of the art in the field. The book is a complete treatment of snake robotics, with topics ranging from mathematical modelling techniques, through mechatronic design and implementation, to control design strategies. The development of two snake robots is de...

  13. Data specifications for INSPIRE

    Science.gov (United States)

    Portele, Clemens; Woolf, Andrew; Cox, Simon

    2010-05-01

    In Europe a major recent development has been the entering in force of the INSPIRE Directive in May 2007, establishing an infrastructure for spatial information in Europe to support Community environmental policies, and policies or activities which may have an impact on the environment. INSPIRE is based on the infrastructures for spatial information established and operated by the 27 Member States of the European Union. The Directive addresses 34 spatial data themes needed for environmental applications, with key components specified through technical implementing rules. This makes INSPIRE a unique example of a legislative "regional" approach. One of the requirements of the INSPIRE Directive is to make existing spatial data sets with relevance for one of the spatial data themes available in an interoperable way, i.e. where the spatial data from different sources in Europe can be combined to a coherent result. Since INSPIRE covers a wide range of spatial data themes, the first step has been the development of a modelling framework that provides a common foundation for all themes. This framework is largely based on the ISO 19100 series of standards. The use of common generic spatial modelling concepts across all themes is an important enabler for interoperability. As a second step, data specifications for the first set of themes has been developed based on the modelling framework. The themes include addresses, transport networks, protected sites, hydrography, administrative areas and others. The data specifications were developed by selected experts nominated by stakeholders from all over Europe. For each theme a working group was established in early 2008 working on their specific theme and collaborating with the other working groups on cross-theme issues. After a public review of the draft specifications starting in December 2008, an open testing process and thorough comment resolution process, the draft technical implementing rules for these themes have been

  14. Bio-inspired Miniature Suction Cups Actuated by Shape Memory Alloy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hu Bing-shan

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Wall climbing robots using negative pressure suction always employ air pumps which have great noise and large volume. Two prototypes of bio-inspired miniature suction cup actuated by shape memory alloy (SMA are designed based on studying characteristics of biologic suction apparatuses, and the suction cups in this paper can be used as adhesion mechanisms for miniature wall climbing robots without air pumps. The first prototype with a two-way shape memory effect (TWSME extension TiNi spring imitates the piston structure of the stalked sucker; the second one actuated by a one way SMA actuator with a bias has a basic structure of stiff margin, guiding element, leader and elastic element. Analytical model of the second prototype is founded considering the constitutive model of the SMA actuator, the deflection of the thin elastic plate under compound load and the thermo-dynamic model of the sealed air cavity. Experiments are done to test their suction characteristics, and the analytical model of the second prototype is simulated on Matlab/simulink platform and validated by experiments.

  15. Bio-inspired Miniature Suction Cups Actuated by Shape Memory Alloy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hu Bing-Shan

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Wall climbing robots using negative pressure suction always employ air pumps which have great noise and large volume. Two prototypes of bio-inspired miniature suction cup actuated by shape memory alloy (SMA are designed based on studying characteristics of biologic suction apparatuses, and the suction cups in this paper can be used as adhesion mechanisms for miniature wall climbing robots without air pumps. The first prototype with a two-way shape memory effect (TWSME extension TiNi spring imitates the piston structure of the stalked sucker; the second one actuated by a one way SMA actuator with a bias has a basic structure of stiff margin, guiding element, leader and elastic element. Analytical model of the second prototype is founded considering the constitutive model of the SMA actuator, the deflection of the thin elastic plate under compound load and the thermo-dynamic model of the sealed air cavity. Experiments are done to test their suction characteristics, and the analytical model of the second prototype is simulated on Matlab/simulink platform and validated by experiments.

  16. Inspiring a generation

    CERN Multimedia

    2012-01-01

    The motto of the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games is ‘Inspire a generation’ so it was particularly pleasing to see science, the LHC and Higgs bosons featuring so strongly in the opening ceremony of the Paralympics last week.   It’s a sign of just how far our field has come that such a high-profile event featured particle physics so strongly, and we can certainly add our support to that motto. If the legacy of London 2012 is a generation inspired by science as well as sport, then the games will have more than fulfilled their mission. Particle physics has truly inspiring stories to tell, going well beyond Higgs and the LHC, and the entire community has played its part in bringing the excitement of frontier research in particle physics to a wide audience. Nevertheless, we cannot rest on our laurels: maintaining the kind of enthusiasm for science we witnessed at the Paralympic opening ceremony will require constant vigilance, and creative thinking about ways to rea...

  17. Perceptually-Inspired Computing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ming Lin

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Human sensory systems allow individuals to see, hear, touch, and interact with the surrounding physical environment. Understanding human perception and its limit enables us to better exploit the psychophysics of human perceptual systems to design more efficient, adaptive algorithms and develop perceptually-inspired computational models. In this talk, I will survey some of recent efforts on perceptually-inspired computing with applications to crowd simulation and multimodal interaction. In particular, I will present data-driven personality modeling based on the results of user studies, example-guided physics-based sound synthesis using auditory perception, as well as perceptually-inspired simplification for multimodal interaction. These perceptually guided principles can be used to accelerating multi-modal interaction and visual computing, thereby creating more natural human-computer interaction and providing more immersive experiences. I will also present their use in interactive applications for entertainment, such as video games, computer animation, and shared social experience. I will conclude by discussing possible future research directions.

  18. Nature-inspired design of hybrid intelligent systems

    CERN Document Server

    Castillo, Oscar; Kacprzyk, Janusz

    2017-01-01

    This book highlights recent advances in the design of hybrid intelligent systems based on nature-inspired optimization and their application in areas such as intelligent control and robotics, pattern recognition, time series prediction, and optimization of complex problems. The book is divided into seven main parts, the first of which addresses theoretical aspects of and new concepts and algorithms based on type-2 and intuitionistic fuzzy logic systems. The second part focuses on neural network theory, and explores the applications of neural networks in diverse areas, such as time series prediction and pattern recognition. The book’s third part presents enhancements to meta-heuristics based on fuzzy logic techniques and describes new nature-inspired optimization algorithms that employ fuzzy dynamic adaptation of parameters, while the fourth part presents diverse applications of nature-inspired optimization algorithms. In turn, the fifth part investigates applications of fuzzy logic in diverse areas, such as...

  19. An Engineering Mentor's Take on "FIRST" Robotics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Jim

    2013-01-01

    In this article, the author describes a program that he says has "made being smart cool." "FIRST" (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics has made a significant contribution toward progress in advancing science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) courses and STEM careers with young people. "FIRST" Robotics…

  20. The Creation of a Multi-Human, Multi-Robot Interactive Jam Session

    OpenAIRE

    Weinberg, Gil; Blosser, Brian; Mallikarjuna, Trishul; Raman, Aparna

    2009-01-01

    This paper presents an interactive and improvisational jam session, including human players and two robotic musicians. The project was developed in an effort to create novel and inspiring music through human-robot collaboration. The jam session incorporates Shimon, a newly-developed socially-interactive robotic marimba player, and Haile, a perceptual robotic percussionist developed in previous work. The paper gives an overview of the musical perception modules, adaptive improvisation modes an...

  1. Robotic buildings(s)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bier, H.H.

    2014-01-01

    Technological and conceptual advances in fields such as artificial intelligence, robotics, and material science have enabled robotic building to be in the last decade prototypically implemented. In this context, robotic building implies both physically built robotic environments and robotically

  2. Lunabotics Mining Competition: Inspiration Through Accomplishment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Robert P.

    2011-01-01

    NASA's Lunabotics Mining Competition is designed to promote the development of interest in space activities and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) fields. The competition uses excavation, a necessary first step towards extracting resources from the regolith and building bases on the moon. The unique physical properties of lunar regolith and the reduced 1/6th gravity, vacuum environment make excavation a difficult technical challenge. Advances in lunar regolith mining have the potential to significantly contribute to our nation's space vision and NASA space exploration operations. The competition is conducted annually by NASA at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. The teams that can use telerobotic or autonomous operation to excavate a lunar regolith geotechnical simulant, herein after referred to as Black Point-1 (or BP-1) and score the most points (calculated as an average of two separate 10-minute timed competition attempts) will eam points towards the Joe Kosmo Award for Excellence and the scores will reflect ranking in the on-site mining category of the competition. The minimum excavation requirement is 10.0 kg during each competition attempt and the robotic excavator, referred to as the "Lunabot", must meet all specifications. This paper will review the achievements of the Lunabotics Mining Competition in 2010 and 2011, and present the new rules for 2012. By providing a framework for robotic design and fabrication, which culminates in a live competition event, university students have been able to produce sophisticated lunabots which are tele-operated. Multi-disciplinary teams are encouraged and the extreme sense of accomplishment provides a unique source of inspiration to the participating students, which has been shown to translate into increased interest in STEM careers. Our industrial sponsors (Caterpillar, Newmont Mining, Harris, Honeybee Robotics) have all stated that there is a strong need for skills in the workforce related

  3. Review on design and control aspects of ankle rehabilitation robots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jamwal, Prashant K; Hussain, Shahid; Xie, Sheng Q

    2015-03-01

    Ankle rehabilitation robots can play an important role in improving outcomes of the rehabilitation treatment by assisting therapists and patients in number of ways. Consequently, few robot designs have been proposed by researchers which fall under either of the two categories, namely, wearable robots or platform-based robots. This paper presents a review of both kinds of ankle robots along with a brief analysis of their design, actuation and control approaches. While reviewing these designs it was observed that most of them are undesirably inspired by industrial robot designs. Taking note of the design concerns of current ankle robots, few improvements in the ankle robot designs have also been suggested. Conventional position control or force control approaches, being used in the existing ankle robots, have been reviewed. Apparently, opportunities of improvement also exist in the actuation as well as control of ankle robots. Subsequently, a discussion on most recent research in the development of novel actuators and advanced controllers based on appropriate physical and cognitive human-robot interaction has also been included in this review. Implications for Rehabilitation Ankle joint functions are restricted/impaired as a consequence of stroke or injury during sports or otherwise. Robots can help in reinstating functions faster and can also work as tool for recording rehabilitation data useful for further analysis. Evolution of ankle robots with respect to their design and control aspects has been discussed in the present paper and a novel design with futuristic control approach has been proposed.

  4. Switchable bio-inspired adhesives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kroner, Elmar

    2015-03-01

    Geckos have astonishing climbing abilities. They can adhere to almost any surface and can run on walls and even stick to ceilings. The extraordinary adhesion performance is caused by a combination of a complex surface pattern on their toes and the biomechanics of its movement. These biological dry adhesives have been intensely investigated during recent years because of the unique combination of adhesive properties. They provide high adhesion, allow for easy detachment, can be removed residue-free, and have self-cleaning properties. Many aspects have been successfully mimicked, leading to artificial, bio-inspired, patterned dry adhesives, and were addressed and in some aspects they even outperform the adhesion capabilities of geckos. However, designing artificial patterned adhesion systems with switchable adhesion remains a big challenge; the gecko's adhesion system is based on a complex hierarchical surface structure and on advanced biomechanics, which are both difficult to mimic. In this paper, two approaches are presented to achieve switchable adhesion. The first approach is based on a patterned polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) polymer, where adhesion can be switched on and off by applying a low and a high compressive preload. The switch in adhesion is caused by a reversible mechanical instability of the adhesive silicone structures. The second approach is based on a composite material consisting of a Nickel- Titanium (NiTi) shape memory alloy and a patterned adhesive PDMS layer. The NiTi alloy is trained to change its surface topography as a function of temperature, which results in a change of the contact area and of alignment of the adhesive pattern towards a substrate, leading to switchable adhesion. These examples show that the unique properties of bio-inspired adhesives can be greatly improved by new concepts such as mechanical instability or by the use of active materials which react to external stimuli.

  5. Soft Robotics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitesides, George M

    2018-04-09

    This description of "soft robotics" is not intended to be a conventional review, in the sense of a comprehensive technical summary of a developing field. Rather, its objective is to describe soft robotics as a new field-one that offers opportunities to chemists and materials scientists who like to make "things" and to work with macroscopic objects that move and exert force. It will give one (personal) view of what soft actuators and robots are, and how this class of soft devices fits into the more highly developed field of conventional "hard" robotics. It will also suggest how and why soft robotics is more than simply a minor technical "tweak" on hard robotics and propose a unique role for chemistry, and materials science, in this field. Soft robotics is, at its core, intellectually and technologically different from hard robotics, both because it has different objectives and uses and because it relies on the properties of materials to assume many of the roles played by sensors, actuators, and controllers in hard robotics. © 2018 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  6. Embodiment design of soft continuum robots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rongjie Kang

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available This article presents the results of a multidisciplinary project where mechatronic engineers worked alongside biologists to develop a soft robotic arm that captures key features of octopus anatomy and neurophysiology. The concept of embodiment (the dynamic coupling between sensory-motor control, anatomy, materials and environment that allows for the animal to achieve adaptive behaviours is used as a starting point for the design process but tempered by current engineering technologies and approaches. In this article, the embodied design requirements are first discussed from a robotic viewpoint by taking into account real-life engineering limitations; then, the motor control schemes inspired by octopus nervous system are investigated. Finally, the mechanical and control design of a prototype is presented that appropriately blends bio-inspiration and engineering limitations. Simulated and experimental results show that the developed continuum robotic arm is able to reproduce octopus-like motions for bending, reaching and grasping.

  7. A bio-inspired spatial patterning circuit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Kai-Yuan; Joe, Danial J; Shealy, James B; Land, Bruce R; Shen, Xiling

    2014-01-01

    Lateral Inhibition (LI) is a widely conserved patterning mechanism in biological systems across species. Distinct from better-known Turing patterns, LI depend on cell-cell contact rather than diffusion. We built an in silico genetic circuit model to analyze the dynamic properties of LI. The model revealed that LI amplifies differences between neighboring cells to push them into opposite states, hence forming stable 2-D patterns. Inspired by this insight, we designed and implemented an electronic circuit that recapitulates LI patterning dynamics. This biomimetic system serve as a physical model to elucidate the design principle of generating robust patterning through spatial feedback, regardless of the underlying devices being biological or electrical.

  8. A bio-inspired real-time capable artificial lateral line system for freestream flow measurements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abels, C; Qualtieri, A; De Vittorio, M; Megill, W M; Rizzi, F

    2016-06-03

    To enhance today's artificial flow sensing capabilities in aerial and underwater robotics, future robots could be equipped with a large number of miniaturized sensors distributed over the surface to provide high resolution measurement of the surrounding fluid flow. In this work we show a linear array of closely separated bio-inspired micro-electro-mechanical flow sensors whose sensing mechanism is based on a piezoresistive strain-gauge along a stress-driven cantilever beam, mimicking the biological superficial neuromasts found in the lateral line organ of fishes. Aiming to improve state-of-the-art flow sensing capability in autonomously flying and swimming robots, our artificial lateral line system was designed and developed to feature multi-parameter freestream flow measurements which provide information about (1) local flow velocities as measured by the signal amplitudes from the individual cantilevers as well as (2) propagation velocity, (3) linear forward/backward direction along the cantilever beam orientation and (4) periodicity of pulses or pulse trains determined by cross-correlating sensor signals. A real-time capable cross-correlation procedure was developed which makes it possible to extract freestream flow direction and velocity information from flow fluctuations. The computed flow velocities deviate from a commercial system by 0.09 m s(-1) at 0.5 m s(-1) and 0.15 m s(-1) at 1.0 m s(-1) flow velocity for a sampling rate of 240 Hz and a sensor distance of 38 mm. Although experiments were performed in air, the presented flow sensing system can be applied to underwater vehicles as well, once the sensors are embedded in a waterproof micro-electro-mechanical systems package.

  9. #IWD2016 Academic Inspiration

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Meier, Ninna

    2016-01-01

    What academics or books have inspired you in your writing and research, or helped to make sense of the world around you? In this feature essay, Ninna Meier returns to her experience of reading Hannah Arendt as she sought to understand work and how it relates to value production in capitalist...... economies. Meier recounts how Arendt’s book On Revolution (1963) forged connective threads between the ‘smallest parts’ and the ‘largest wholes’ and showed how academic work is never fully relegated to the past, but can return in new iterations across time....

  10. A review on robotic fish enabled by ionic polymer-metal composite artificial muscles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Zheng

    2017-01-01

    A novel actuating material, which is lightweight, soft, and capable of generating large flapping motion under electrical stimuli, is highly desirable to build energy-efficient and maneuverable bio-inspired underwater robots. Ionic polymer-metal composites are important category of electroactive polymers, since they can generate large bending motions under low actuation voltages. IPMCs are ideal artificial muscles for small-scale and bio-inspired robots. This paper takes a system perspective to review the recent work on IPMC-enabled underwater robots, from modeling, fabrication, and bio-inspired design perspectives. First, a physics-based and control-oriented model of IPMC actuator will be reviewed. Second, a bio-inspired robotic fish propelled by IPMC caudal fin will be presented and a steady-state speed model of the fish will be demonstrated. Third, a novel fabrication process for 3D actuating membrane will be introduced and a bio-inspired robotic manta ray propelled by two IPMC pectoral fins will be demonstrated. Fourth, a 2D maneuverable robotic fish propelled by multiple IPMC fin will be presented. Last, advantages and challenges of using IPMC artificial muscles in bio-inspired robots will be concluded.

  11. Robotics 101

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sultan, Alan

    2011-01-01

    Robots are used in all kinds of industrial settings. They are used to rivet bolts to cars, to move items from one conveyor belt to another, to gather information from other planets, and even to perform some very delicate types of surgery. Anyone who has watched a robot perform its tasks cannot help but be impressed by how it works. This article…

  12. Vitruvian Robot

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hasse, Cathrine

    2017-01-01

    future. A real version of Ava would not last long in a human world because she is basically a solipsist, who does not really care about humans. She cannot co-create the line humans walk along. The robots created as ‘perfect women’ (sex robots) today are very far from the ideal image of Ava...

  13. When science inspires art

    CERN Multimedia

    Anaïs Vernède

    2011-01-01

    On Tuesday 18 January 2011, artist Pipilotti Rist came to CERN to find out how science could provide her with a source of inspiration for her art and perhaps to get ideas for future work. Pipilotti, who is an eclectic artist always on the lookout for an original source of inspiration, is almost as passionate about physics as she is about art.   Ever Is Over All, 1997, audio video installation by Pipilotti Rist.  View of the installation at the National Museum for Foreign Art, Sofia, Bulgaria. © Pipilotti Rist. Courtesy the artist and Hauser & Wirth. Photo by Angel Tzvetanov. Swiss video-maker Pipilotti Rist (her real name is Elisabeth Charlotte Rist), who is well-known in the international art world for her highly colourful videos and creations, visited CERN for the first time on Tuesday 18 January 2011.  Her visit represented a trip down memory lane, since she originally studied physics before becoming interested in pursuing a career as an artist and going on to de...

  14. Robot Teachers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nørgård, Rikke Toft; Ess, Charles Melvin; Bhroin, Niamh Ni

    The world's first robot teacher, Saya, was introduced to a classroom in Japan in 2009. Saya, had the appearance of a young female teacher. She could express six basic emotions, take the register and shout orders like 'be quiet' (The Guardian, 2009). Since 2009, humanoid robot technologies have...... developed. It is now suggested that robot teachers may become regular features in educational settings, and may even 'take over' from human teachers in ten to fifteen years (cf. Amundsen, 2017 online; Gohd, 2017 online). Designed to look and act like a particular kind of human; robot teachers mediate human...... existence and roles, while also aiming to support education through sophisticated, automated, human-like interaction. Our paper explores the design and existential implications of ARTIE, a robot teacher at Oxford Brookes University (2017, online). Drawing on an initial empirical exploration we propose...

  15. Robot vision

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hall, E.L.

    1984-01-01

    Almost all industrial robots use internal sensors such as shaft encoders which measure rotary position, or tachometers which measure velocity, to control their motions. Most controllers also provide interface capabilities so that signals from conveyors, machine tools, and the robot itself may be used to accomplish a task. However, advanced external sensors, such as visual sensors, can provide a much greater degree of adaptability for robot control as well as add automatic inspection capabilities to the industrial robot. Visual and other sensors are now being used in fundamental operations such as material processing with immediate inspection, material handling with adaption, arc welding, and complex assembly tasks. A new industry of robot vision has emerged. The application of these systems is an area of great potential

  16. Social Robots

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Social robotics is a cutting edge research area gathering researchers and stakeholders from various disciplines and organizations. The transformational potential that these machines, in the form of, for example, caregiving, entertainment or partner robots, pose to our societies and to us as indiv......Social robotics is a cutting edge research area gathering researchers and stakeholders from various disciplines and organizations. The transformational potential that these machines, in the form of, for example, caregiving, entertainment or partner robots, pose to our societies and to us...... as individuals seems to be limited by our technical limitations and phantasy alone. This collection contributes to the field of social robotics by exploring its boundaries from a philosophically informed standpoint. It constructively outlines central potentials and challenges and thereby also provides a stable...

  17. Robotic seeding

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Søren Marcus; Fountas, Spyros; Sørensen, Claus Aage Grøn

    2017-01-01

    Agricultural robotics has received attention for approximately 20 years, but today there are only a few examples of the application of robots in agricultural practice. The lack of uptake may be (at least partly) because in many cases there is either no compelling economic benefit......, or there is a benefit but it is not recognized. The aim of this chapter is to quantify the economic benefits from the application of agricultural robots under a specific condition where such a benefit is assumed to exist, namely the case of early seeding and re-seeding in sugar beet. With some predefined assumptions...... with regard to speed, capacity and seed mapping, we found that among these two technical systems both early seeding with a small robot and re-seeding using a robot for a smaller part of the field appear to be financially viable solutions in sugar beet production....

  18. Referees check robots after qualifying match at regional robotic competition at KSC

    Science.gov (United States)

    1999-01-01

    Referees check the robots on the floor of the playing field after a qualifying match of the 1999 Southeastern Regional robotic competition at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex . Thirty schools from around the country have converged at KSC for the event that pits gladiator robots against each other in an athletic-style competition. The robots have to retrieve pillow- like disks from the floor, as well as climb onto the platform (with flags) and raise the cache of pillows to a height of eight feet. KSC is hosting the event being sponsored by the nonprofit organization For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology, known as FIRST. The FIRST robotics competition is designed to provide students with a hands-on, inside look at engineering and other professional careers.

  19. Student teams maneuver robots in qualifying match at regional robotic competition at KSC

    Science.gov (United States)

    1999-01-01

    All four robots, maneuvered by student teams behind protective walls, converge on a corner of the playing field during qualifying matches of the 1999 Southeastern Regional robotic competition at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex . Thirty schools from around the country have converged at KSC for the event that pits gladiator robots against each other in an athletic-style competition. The robots have to retrieve pillow- like disks from the floor, as well as climb onto the platform (with flags) and raise the cache of pillows to a height of eight feet. KSC is hosting the event being sponsored by the nonprofit organization For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology, known as FIRST. The FIRST robotics competition is designed to provide students with a hands-on, inside look at engineering and other professional careers.

  20. Micro intelligence robot

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jeon, Yon Ho

    1991-07-01

    This book gives descriptions of micro robot about conception of robots and micro robot, match rules of conference of micro robots, search methods of mazes, and future and prospect of robots. It also explains making and design of 8 beat robot like making technique, software, sensor board circuit, and stepping motor catalog, speedy 3, Mr. Black and Mr. White, making and design of 16 beat robot, such as micro robot artist, Jerry 2 and magic art of shortening distances algorithm of robot simulation.

  1. An Intelligent Robot Programing

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hong, Seong Yong

    2012-01-15

    This book introduces an intelligent robot programing with background of the begging, introduction of VPL, and SPL, building of environment for robot platform, starting of robot programing, design of simulation environment, robot autonomy drive control programing, simulation graphic. Such as SPL graphic programing graphical image and graphical shapes, and graphical method application, application of procedure for robot control, robot multiprogramming, robot bumper sensor programing, robot LRF sencor programing and robot color sensor programing.

  2. An Intelligent Robot Programing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hong, Seong Yong

    2012-01-01

    This book introduces an intelligent robot programing with background of the begging, introduction of VPL, and SPL, building of environment for robot platform, starting of robot programing, design of simulation environment, robot autonomy drive control programing, simulation graphic. Such as SPL graphic programing graphical image and graphical shapes, and graphical method application, application of procedure for robot control, robot multiprogramming, robot bumper sensor programing, robot LRF sencor programing and robot color sensor programing.

  3. Are we ready to move beyond the reductionist approach of classical synergy control?. Comment on "Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands" by Marco Santello et al.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lacquaniti, Francesco; Ivanenko, Yuri P.; Zago, Myrka

    2016-07-01

    Starting from the classical concepts introduced by Sherrington [1] and considerably elaborated by Bernstein [2], much has been learned about motor synergies in the last several years. The contributions of the group funded by the European project ;The Hand Embodied; are remarkable in the field of biological and robotic control of the hand based on synergies, and they are reflected in this enjoyable review [3]. There, Santello et al. adopt Bernstein's definition of motor synergies as multiple elements working together towards a common goal, with the result that multiple degrees of freedom are controlled within a lower-dimensional space than the available number of dimensions.

  4. Robotics Algorithms Provide Nutritional Guidelines

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-01-01

    On July 5, 1997, a small robot emerged from its lander like an insect from an egg, crawling out onto the rocky surface of Mars. About the size of a child s wagon, NASA s Sojourner robot was the first successful rover mission to the Red Planet. For 83 sols (Martian days, typically about 40 minutes longer than Earth days), Sojourner - largely remote controlled by NASA operators on Earth - transmitted photos and data unlike any previously collected. Sojourner was perhaps the crowning achievement of the NASA Space Telerobotics Program, an Agency initiative designed to push the limits of robotics in space. Telerobotics - devices that merge the autonomy of robotics with the direct human control of teleoperators - was already a part of NASA s efforts; probes like the Viking landers that preceded Sojourner on Mars, for example, were telerobotic applications. The Space Telerobotics Program, a collaboration between Ames Research Center, Johnson Space Center, Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), and multiple universities, focused on developing remote-controlled robotics for three main purposes: on-orbit assembly and servicing, science payload tending, and planetary surface robotics. The overarching goal was to create robots that could be guided to build structures in space, monitor scientific experiments, and, like Sojourner, scout distant planets in advance of human explorers. While telerobotics remains a significant aspect of NASA s efforts, as evidenced by the currently operating Spirit and Opportunity Mars rovers, the Hubble Space Telescope, and many others - the Space Telerobotics Program was dissolved and redistributed within the Agency the same year as Sojourner s success. The program produced a host of remarkable technologies and surprising inspirations, including one that is changing the way people eat

  5. Physics-based approach to chemical source localization using mobile robotic swarms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zarzhitsky, Dimitri

    2008-07-01

    Recently, distributed computation has assumed a dominant role in the fields of artificial intelligence and robotics. To improve system performance, engineers are combining multiple cooperating robots into cohesive collectives called swarms. This thesis illustrates the application of basic principles of physicomimetics, or physics-based design, to swarm robotic systems. Such principles include decentralized control, short-range sensing and low power consumption. We show how the application of these principles to robotic swarms results in highly scalable, robust, and adaptive multi-robot systems. The emergence of these valuable properties can be predicted with the help of well-developed theoretical methods. In this research effort, we have designed and constructed a distributed physicomimetics system for locating sources of airborne chemical plumes. This task, called chemical plume tracing (CPT), is receiving a great deal of attention due to persistent homeland security threats. For this thesis, we have created a novel CPT algorithm called fluxotaxis that is based on theoretical principles of fluid dynamics. Analytically, we show that fluxotaxis combines the essence, as well as the strengths, of the two most popular biologically-inspired CPT methods-- chemotaxis and anemotaxis. The chemotaxis strategy consists of navigating in the direction of the chemical density gradient within the plume, while the anemotaxis approach is based on an upwind traversal of the chemical cloud. Rigorous and extensive experimental evaluations have been performed in simulated chemical plume environments. Using a suite of performance metrics that capture the salient aspects of swarm-specific behavior, we have been able to evaluate and compare the three CPT algorithms. We demonstrate the improved performance of our fluxotaxis approach over both chemotaxis and anemotaxis in these realistic simulation environments, which include obstacles. To test our understanding of CPT on actual hardware

  6. Fish-inspired self-powered microelectromechanical flow sensor with biomimetic hydrogel cupula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bora, M.; Kottapalli, A. G. P.; Miao, J. M.; Triantafyllou, M. S.

    2017-10-01

    Flow sensors inspired from lateral line neuromasts of cavefish have been widely investigated over decades to develop artificial sensors. The design and function of these natural sensors have been mimicked using microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) based sensors. However, there is more to the overall function and performance of these natural sensors. Mimicking the morphology and material properties of specialized structures like a cupula would significantly help to improve the existing designs. Toward this goal, the paper reports development of a canal neuromast inspired piezoelectric sensor and investigates the role of a biomimetic cupula in influencing the performance of the sensor. The sensor was developed using microfabrication technology and tested for the detection of the steady-state and oscillatory flows. An artificial cupula was synthesized using a soft hydrogel material and characterized for morphology and mechanical properties. Results show that the artificial cupula had a porous structure and high mechanical strength similar to the biological canal neuromast. Experimental results show the ability of these sensors to measure the steady-state flows accurately, and for oscillatory flows, an increase in the sensor output was detected in the presence of the cupula structure. This is the first time a MEMS based piezoelectric sensor is demonstrated to detect steady-state flows using the principle of vortex-induced vibrations. The bioinspired sensor developed in this work would be investigated further to understand the role of the cupula structure in biological flow sensing mechanisms, thus contributing toward the design of highly sensitive and efficient sensors for various applications such as underwater robotics, microfluidics, and biomedical devices.

  7. Bio-inspired dental fillings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deyhle, Hans; Bunk, Oliver; Buser, Stefan; Krastl, Gabriel; Zitzmann, Nicola U.; Ilgenstein, Bernd; Beckmann, Felix; Pfeiffer, Franz; Weiger, Roland; Müller, Bert

    2009-08-01

    Human teeth are anisotropic composites. Dentin as the core material of the tooth consists of nanometer-sized calcium phosphate crystallites embedded in collagen fiber networks. It shows its anisotropy on the micrometer scale by its well-oriented microtubules. The detailed three-dimensional nanostructure of the hard tissues namely dentin and enamel, however, is not understood, although numerous studies on the anisotropic mechanical properties have been performed and evaluated to explain the tooth function including the enamel-dentin junction acting as effective crack barrier. Small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) with a spatial resolution in the 10 μm range allows determining the size and orientation of the constituents on the nanometer scale with reasonable precision. So far, only some dental materials, i.e. the fiber reinforced posts exhibit anisotropic properties related to the micrometer-size glass fibers. Dental fillings, composed of nanostructures oriented similar to the natural hard tissues of teeth, however, do not exist at all. The current X-ray-based investigations of extracted human teeth provide evidence for oriented micro- and nanostructures in dentin and enamel. These fundamental quantitative findings result in profound knowledge to develop biologically inspired dental fillings with superior resistance to thermal and mechanical shocks.

  8. Soft-rigid interaction mechanism towards a lobster-inspired hybrid actuator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yaohui; Wan, Fang; Wu, Tong; Song, Chaoyang

    2018-01-01

    Soft pneumatic actuators (SPAs) are intrinsically light-weight, compliant and therefore ideal to directly interact with humans and be implemented into wearable robotic devices. However, they also pose new challenges in describing and sensing their continuous deformation. In this paper, we propose a hybrid actuator design with bio-inspirations from the lobsters, which can generate reconfigurable bending movements through the internal soft chamber interacting with the external rigid shells. This design with joint and link structures enables us to exactly track its bending configurations that previously posed a significant challenge to soft robots. Analytic models are developed to illustrate the soft-rigid interaction mechanism with experimental validation. A robotic glove using hybrid actuators to assist grasping is assembled to illustrate their potentials in safe human-robot interactions. Considering all the design merits, our work presents a practical approach to the design of next-generation robots capable of achieving both good accuracy and compliance.

  9. Embodied Evolution in Collective Robotics: A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas Bredeche

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available This article provides an overview of evolutionary robotics techniques applied to online distributed evolution for robot collectives, namely, embodied evolution. It provides a definition of embodied evolution as well as a thorough description of the underlying concepts and mechanisms. This article also presents a comprehensive summary of research published in the field since its inception around the year 2000, providing various perspectives to identify the major trends. In particular, we identify a shift from considering embodied evolution as a parallel search method within small robot collectives (fewer than 10 robots to embodied evolution as an online distributed learning method for designing collective behaviors in swarm-like collectives. This article concludes with a discussion of applications and open questions, providing a milestone for past and an inspiration for future research.

  10. Learning in robotic manipulation: The role of dimensionality reduction in policy search methods. Comment on "Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands" by Marco Santello et al.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ficuciello, Fanny; Siciliano, Bruno

    2016-07-01

    A question that often arises, among researchers working on artificial hands and robotic manipulation, concerns the real meaning of synergies. Namely, are they a realistic representation of the central nervous system control of manipulation activities at different levels and of the sensory-motor manipulation apparatus of the human being, or do they constitute just a theoretical framework exploiting analytical methods to simplify the representation of grasping and manipulation activities? Apparently, this is not a simple question to answer and, in this regard, many minds from the field of neuroscience and robotics are addressing the issue [1]. The interest of robotics is definitely oriented towards the adoption of synergies to tackle the control problem of devices with high number of degrees of freedom (DoFs) which are required to achieve motor and learning skills comparable to those of humans. The synergy concept is useful for innovative underactuated design of anthropomorphic hands [2], while the resulting dimensionality reduction simplifies the control of biomedical devices such as myoelectric hand prostheses [3]. Synergies might also be useful in conjunction with the learning process [4]. This aspect is less explored since few works on synergy-based learning have been realized in robotics. In learning new tasks through trial-and-error, physical interaction is important. On the other hand, advanced mechanical designs such as tendon-driven actuation, underactuated compliant mechanisms and hyper-redundant/continuum robots might exhibit enhanced capabilities of adapting to changing environments and learning from exploration. In particular, high DoFs and compliance increase the complexity of modelling and control of these devices. An analytical approach to manipulation planning requires a precise model of the object, an accurate description of the task, and an evaluation of the object affordance, which all make the process rather time consuming. The integration of

  11. The scientific study of inspiration in the creative process: Challenges and opportunities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Victoria C. Oleynick

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Inspiration is a motivational state that compels individuals to bring ideas into fruition. Creators have long argued that inspiration is important to the creative process, but until recently, scientists have not investigated this claim. In this article, we review challenges to the study of creative inspiration, as well as solutions to these challenges afforded by theoretical and empirical work on inspiration over the past decade. First, we discuss the problem of definitional ambiguity, which has been addressed through an integrative process of construct conceptualization. Second, we discuss the challenge of how to operationalize inspiration. This challenge has been overcome by the development and validation of the Inspiration Scale, which may be used to assess trait or state inspiration. Third, we address ambiguity regarding how inspiration differs from related concepts (creativity, insight, positive affect by discussing discriminant validity. Next, we discuss the preconception that inspiration is less important than perspiration (effort, and we review empirical evidence that inspiration and effort both play important—but different—roles in the creative process. Finally, with many challenges overcome, we argue that the foundation is now set for a new generation of research focused on neural underpinnings. We discuss potential challenges to and opportunities for the neuroscientific study of inspiration. A better understanding of the biological basis of inspiration will illuminate the process through which creative ideas fire the soul, such that individuals are compelled to transform ideas into products and solutions that may benefit society.

  12. Bio-inspired algorithms applied to molecular docking simulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heberlé, G; de Azevedo, W F

    2011-01-01

    Nature as a source of inspiration has been shown to have a great beneficial impact on the development of new computational methodologies. In this scenario, analyses of the interactions between a protein target and a ligand can be simulated by biologically inspired algorithms (BIAs). These algorithms mimic biological systems to create new paradigms for computation, such as neural networks, evolutionary computing, and swarm intelligence. This review provides a description of the main concepts behind BIAs applied to molecular docking simulations. Special attention is devoted to evolutionary algorithms, guided-directed evolutionary algorithms, and Lamarckian genetic algorithms. Recent applications of these methodologies to protein targets identified in the Mycobacterium tuberculosis genome are described.

  13. Robot friendship: Can a robot be a friend?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Emmeche, Claus

    2014-01-01

    Friendship is used here as a conceptual vehicle for framing questions about the distinctiveness of human cognition in relation to natural systems such as other animal species and to artificial systems such as robots. By exploring this very common form of a human interpersonal relationship......, the author indicates that even though it is difficult to say something generally true about friendship among humans, distinct forms of friendship as practiced and distinct notions of friendship have been investigated in the social and human sciences and in biology. A more general conceptualization...... of friendship as a triadic relation analogous to the sign relation is suggested. Based on this the author asks how one may conceive of robot-robot and robot-human friendships; and how an interdisciplinary perspective upon that relation can contribute to analyse levels of embodied cognition in natural...

  14. Space Robotics Challenge

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Space Robotics Challenge seeks to infuse robot autonomy from the best and brightest research groups in the robotics community into NASA robots for future...

  15. VI International Workshop on Nature Inspired Cooperative Strategies for Optimization

    CERN Document Server

    Otero, Fernando; Masegosa, Antonio

    2014-01-01

    Biological and other natural processes have always been a source of inspiration for computer science and information technology. Many emerging problem solving techniques integrate advanced evolution and cooperation strategies, encompassing a range of spatio-temporal scales for visionary conceptualization of evolutionary computation. This book is a collection of research works presented in the VI International Workshop on Nature Inspired Cooperative Strategies for Optimization (NICSO) held in Canterbury, UK. Previous editions of NICSO were held in Granada, Spain (2006 & 2010), Acireale, Italy (2007), Tenerife, Spain (2008), and Cluj-Napoca, Romania (2011). NICSO 2013 and this book provides a place where state-of-the-art research, latest ideas and emerging areas of nature inspired cooperative strategies for problem solving are vigorously discussed and exchanged among the scientific community. The breadth and variety of articles in this book report on nature inspired methods and applications such as Swarm In...

  16. Robotic arm

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kwech, H.

    1989-01-01

    A robotic arm positionable within a nuclear vessel by access through a small diameter opening and having a mounting tube supported within the vessel and mounting a plurality of arm sections for movement lengthwise of the mounting tube as well as for movement out of a window provided in the wall of the mounting tube is disclosed. An end effector, such as a grinding head or welding element, at an operating end of the robotic arm, can be located and operated within the nuclear vessel through movement derived from six different axes of motion provided by mounting and drive connections between arm sections of the robotic arm. The movements are achieved by operation of remotely-controllable servo motors, all of which are mounted at a control end of the robotic arm to be outside the nuclear vessel. 23 figs

  17. Robotic surgery

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... with this type of surgery give it some advantages over standard endoscopic techniques. The surgeon can make ... Elsevier Saunders; 2015:chap 87. Muller CL, Fried GM. Emerging technology in surgery: Informatics, electronics, robotics. In: ...

  18. Robotic parathyroidectomy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okoh, Alexis Kofi; Sound, Sara; Berber, Eren

    2015-09-01

    Robotic parathyroidectomy has recently been described. Although the procedure eliminates the neck scar, it is technically more demanding than the conventional approaches. This report is a review of the patients' selection criteria, technique, and outcomes. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Light Robotics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Glückstad, Jesper; Palima, Darwin

    Light Robotics - Structure-Mediated Nanobiophotonics covers the latest means of sculpting of both light and matter for achieving bioprobing and manipulation at the smallest scales. The synergy between photonics, nanotechnology and biotechnology spans the rapidly growing field of nanobiophotonics...

  20. Robotic arm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kwech, Horst

    1989-04-18

    A robotic arm positionable within a nuclear vessel by access through a small diameter opening and having a mounting tube supported within the vessel and mounting a plurality of arm sections for movement lengthwise of the mounting tube as well as for movement out of a window provided in the wall of the mounting tube. An end effector, such as a grinding head or welding element, at an operating end of the robotic arm, can be located and operated within the nuclear vessel through movement derived from six different axes of motion provided by mounting and drive connections between arm sections of the robotic arm. The movements are achieved by operation of remotely-controllable servo motors, all of which are mounted at a control end of the robotic arm to be outside the nuclear vessel.