Bugbot. Half-Insect, Half-Machine.

September 2, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

A piezoelectric beam attached to a Green June Beetle reveals the optimum location to scavenge energy and shows that up to 115 µW total power can be generated from the insect’s body movements. Image credit: Aktakka, et al.

 

“For many years, researchers have been working on designing and fabricating micro-air-vehicles (MAVs), flying robots the size of small insects.

But after realizing how difficult it is to create a tiny, lightweight flying vehicle capable of carrying a payload and being powered by a long-life onboard power source, some researchers have recently stopped trying to copy real-life insects and started using the insects themselves, with a few small tweaks.

For instance, using tiny stimulators near their antennae, electrodes implanted in their central nervous systems, or neuromuscular interfaces, researchers have found that it’s easier to control insect’s brains – and therefore, flight – than to build robotic insects from scratch.”

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