利用太阳能飞行的昆虫机器人

【利用太阳能飞行的昆虫机器人】哈佛大学新推出了一款只有6.5厘米高、259毫克重的昆虫机器人。和其他小型飞行机器人不同,它不需要借助电源飞行。目前,这款太阳能机器人还没有在自然光下升空,因为它需要大约三倍的阳光才能飞行。尽管如此,这是小型飞行机器人领域的一个重要里程碑。http://www.looooker.com/archives/67239

Harvard’s tiny, insect-inspired RoboBee X-Wing can fly using solar power

“This has been one of the major milestones in the development of insect-scale flying robots,” Noah Jafferis, a research associate in Materials Science and Mechanical Engineering in Harvard’s Wyss Institute, told Digital Trends. “Without onboard power, such vehicles have been confined to operate only in the lab. There is still much to be done to enable autonomous flight, however. Our next steps include integrating onboard sensing and control, and further improving vehicle performance to allow for operation in natural sunlight and include onboard batteries.”

At present, the solar-powered robot hasn’t taken to the skies in natural light because it requires around three times the intensity of sunlight to be able to fly. Nonetheless, as Jafferis notes, this is a crucial landmark in the field of diminutive flying robots.

robobee xwing robot 2

Noah T. Jafferis and E. Farrell Helbling, Harvard Microrobotics Laboratory

RoboBee X-Wing is the sequel, of sorts, to a previous influential robot developed at Harvard called RoboBee. The main changes in the new vehicle design include the use of four wings instead of two, which increases efficiency by up to 30%, and improved actuator and transmission design, increasing lift by up to 38%. This provides enough payload to integrate and drive the electronics and solar cells needed to let the vehicle fly untethered.

“Applications of this robot are still a bit far off, but swarms of them could one day be used as distributed sensor networks for environmental monitoring and mapping confined spaces such as in disaster zones or archaeological sites,” Jafferis continued. “We also anticipate that the technologies developed to create this robot will be very useful for any other small scale devices that have extreme mass and power constraints, such as medical or space devices.”

A paper describing the research was recently published in the journal Nature.

https://www.digitaltrends.com/cool-tech/robobee-xwing-robot/


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