Snake robots, whose shape is similar to real snakes, are expected to be suitable for variety of tasks as serch and rescue operations, pipe inspection, and so on. Matsuno Lab at Kyoto University, together with the University of Electro-Communications in Japan, have build a robot snake that can climb up a ladder. For more information see the IDTechEx report on New Robotics and Drones 2018-2028.
The researchers are studying how to control snake robots in complex environments such as disaster sites and plant facilities. Currently they are primarily studying moving, but are aiming to develop into work.
Despite of its very simple string-like body without legs, a snake can realize many kinds of locomotion such as lateral undulation and pole climbing. The team is studying snake-like robots to achieve the similar locomotion as real snakes, or even more difficult movements that cannot be achieved by real snakes.
A snake can climb up a pole-like structure such as a tree by winding around it. A snake-like robot, which uses similar locomotion mechanism, may also be able to move on a cylindrical surface in the same way. The snake robot could also jump, lift its head and swim in water.
Source and top image: Matsuno Lab, Kyoto University
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