DARPA's M3 program is creating and demonstrating novel design tools, fabrication methods and control algorithms to make robots more mobile and better able to manipulate objects in their environment.

DARPA-Funded Inflatable Robotics Helps Spark Idea for Silver Screen Star

Contributed by | Otherlab

 

The giant, balloon-like inflatable robot named Baymax in Disney's Big Hero 6 has its roots in real-world research conducted by iRobot Corporation, Carnegie Mellon University and Otherlab under DARPA's Maximum Mobility Manipulation (M3) program. The film's co-director, Don Hall, has said he was inspired to cast Baymax as an air-filled, soft robot after he saw an inflatable robotic arm on a visit to Carnegie Mellon's Robotics Institute. Carnegie Mellon's work in soft robotics has been supported by DARPA and the National Science Foundation. 

 

DARPA's M3 program is creating and demonstrating novel design tools, fabrication methods and control algorithms to make robots more mobile and better able to manipulate objects in their environment. One area of M3 research is fabric-skinned robots that are filled with and manipulated by air. 

"The M3 program has made great strides in making robots move more naturally like animals or humans move," said Gill Pratt, DARPA program manager. "Inflatable robots, like the arm developed at Carnegie Mellon, offer unique benefits such as high strength to weight, small size when uninflated, low fabrication cost, and safety when working around human beings." 

The M3 program also has developed robots that draw inspiration from four-legged animals, such as the cheetah. View the electric cheetah-bot developed by DARPA performer MIT here.

The content & opinions in this article are the author’s and do not necessarily represent the views of RoboticsTomorrow

Comments (0)

This post does not have any comments. Be the first to leave a comment below.


Post A Comment

You must be logged in before you can post a comment. Login now.

Featured Product

Harmonic Drive Introduces New Lightweight Versions of Select Gearhead Products.

Harmonic Drive Introduces New Lightweight Versions of Select Gearhead Products.

Harmonic Drive LLC, a leader in high precision motion control introduces new lightweight versions of select gearhead products. The new gearheads are ideal for designs where weight is a critical factor. Building on the success of Harmonic Drive LLCs current gear units, new lightweight versions were the next logical evolution of the CS/ SH product lines. With weight reductions of 20-30% without any reduction in torque ratings, the Lightweight (LW) gear units provide exceptional torque density.