Spectrum showcases a radius-changing wheel for robots built by Seoul National University's BioRobotics Laboratory. Not only does this origami wheel allow for the robot to climb over or under things with ease, but also allows it to change whether it needs to move fast or carry some kind of load requiring more torque.
Unlike most automobiles, most robots don't bother with transmissions at all, because they're heavy and complicated. This means that robots have to be designed to either move fast (which doesn't require a lot of torque), or haul stuff (which does), but they're not great at doing both.
The researchers designed an origami wheel that can do both, by simply changing its radius, and thanks to its origami design, it does this by itself. It's a completely automatic continuously variable transmission, which allows a small robot to either move fast or haul stuff without requiring any additional complexity beyond an origami wheel.
|ExoHand from Festo: An Exoskeleton That Can Be Worn Like a Glove|
|"They’ve managed to plant, tend, and harvest an acre and a half of barley using only autonomous vehicles."|
|Chinese warehouse organises, packs, and fulfills 200,000 orders a day with four people|
|“Pack Behaviors in Autonomous Robots.”|
|Rubik's Cube Solving Machine|
|“It knows the very contours of my face.”|
|“What if we could create our own miniature sun here on earth?”|
|The (Very Scary) People of Public Transit|
|How to Avoid Jury Duty|
|CaptchaTweet: Write Tweets in Captcha Form|
|If Sir David Attenborough Restored Vintage Toys|
|“Self-driving vans are actually the least novel-seeming part of the unveiling.”|
|“When Life Gives You Lemons.”|
|Recycled Vacuum Lamps|
|Fake Name Generator|
|“This has do be done, Anderson added, within the next five years.”|
|“The company is losing billions, has essentially no underlying value, and its business could be hammered overnight.”|