by Staff Writers
Waterloo, Ontario (UPI) Jul 30, 2012
Canadian scientists say they've made a robot that not just walks on water like the water strider insect but leaps over the surface like its living counterpart.
A number of tiny robots that can walk on water have been developed that could skim across lakes and other bodies of water to monitor water quality or conduct surveillance operations, but none have been able to make leaps across the water as a water strider does.
Now researcher Qinmin Pan of the University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada, and his colleagues say they've build a true water-striding robot that can both walk and leap on water.
Their robot, with porous, super water-repellent nickel on its three supporting and two jumping legs, can leap more than 5.5 inches, despite weighing as much as 1,100 water striders.
In tests the robot has jumped nearly 14 inches forward -- more than twice its own length -- leaving the water at about 3.6 miles per hour, the researchers said.
The ability to leap as well as walk will make the bio-inspired microrobot more agile and better able to avoid obstacles it encounters on the water's surface, they said.
The research has been published in the American Chemical Society's journal Applied Material & Interfaces.
All about the robots on Earth and beyond!
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement|