NASA Made A Robot Monkey Because It Could
NASA has one of the most advanced robotics labs on the planet where the agency builds the next-generation of space faring robots. It’s latest – RoboSimian – is a robot monkey that can get around like the animal it’s based on. That means it can go from bipedal to quadrupedal for more control.
Here’s the official description from NASA:
Meet RoboSimian, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory’s official entry at the DARPA Robotics Challenge in December 2013. Also known as “Clyde,” the robot is is four-footed, but can also stand on two feet. It has four general-purpose limbs and hands capable of both mobility and manipulation. It came in 5th place out of 16 entries. See RoboSimian in action at the disaster-response competition. Challenges includes turning a valve, traversing uneven terrain, clearing debris, opening and passing through doorways.
Despite being a quadrupedal monkey robot, RoboSimian looks more like a spider when it walks on all four limbs. It’s just a little unsettling. It’s certainly not as terrifying as Petman, but it looks like Boston Dynamic’s cavalcade of terrifying robots may have found themselves an ally in NASA’s Clyde.
Image via NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory/YouTube