AI News, Aerial robot that can morph in flight

Aerial robot that can morph in flight

They can quickly fold their wings during high-speed flight, reducing their imposing span, to easily negotiate the challenging paths before them.[1] Deployment of aerial robots in constricted and cluttered areas for search and rescue, exploratory, or mapping operations will become more and more commonplace.

Accordingly, researchers from the Étienne Jules Marey Institute of Movement Sciences (CNRS / Aix-Marseille Université) have designed a flying robot that can reduce its wingspan in flight to move through a small opening, without intensive steering that would consume too much energy and require a robotic platform featuring a low-inertia (light and small robot).[2] Dubbed Quad-Morphing, the new robot has two rotating arms each equipped with two propellers for helicopter-like flight.

The autopilot activates arm reorientation when the robot nears a tight passage, as determined by a 3D localization system used at the institute.[3] The researchers have also equipped the robot with a miniature camera that can take 120 pictures per second.

This Aerial Robot Changes Shape Mid Flight

Researchers from the Étienne Jules Marey Institute of Movement Sciences have created an aerial robot that can change shape mid-flight, just like birds do.

When its arms are parallel, it reduces its wingspan in half to traverse narrow stretches, an action that mirrors the movements of budgerigars and goshawks flying at speeds above 14 km per hour.

The robot currently navigates using an autopilot system based on a 3D localization system (a set of 17 cameras is tracking its every move and helping it navigate).

Aerial robot that can morph in flight

Marking a world first, researchers from the Étienne Jules Marey Institute of Movement Sciences (CNRS / Aix-Marseille Université) have drawn inspiration from birds to design an aerial robot capable of altering its profile during flight.

They can quickly fold their wings during high-speed flight, reducing their imposing span, to easily negotiate the challenging paths before them.[1] Deployment of aerial robots in constricted and cluttered areas for search and rescue, exploratory, or mapping operations will become more and more commonplace.

Accordingly, researchers from the Étienne Jules Marey Institute of Movement Sciences (CNRS / Aix-Marseille Université) have designed a flying robot that can reduce its wingspan in flight to move through a small opening, without intensive steering that would consume too much energy and require a robotic platform featuring a low-inertia (light and small robot).[2] Dubbed Quad-Morphing, the new robot has two rotating arms each equipped with two propellers for helicopter-like flight.

The autopilot activates arm reorientation when the robot nears a tight passage, as determined by a 3D localization system used at the institute.[3] The researchers have also equipped the robot with a miniature camera that can take 120 pictures per second.

Scientists Develop Bird-like Robots That Can Morph in Flight

This would mean, this new style of aerial robots would be ideally suited for all kinds of exploration missions.CNRS's researchers predictthat the use of aerial robots in “constricted and cluttered areas for search and rescue, exploratory, or mapping operations will become more and more commonplace.”

The inspiration for CNRS's new advanced robots came from the flight abilities of birds and winged insects, evolved over years to allow the species to navigate their crowded and busy native environments such as forests.

CNRS’s new flying machines have the ability to reduce their wingspan in flight allowing them to pass through narrow spaces without the type of heavy energy-consuming steering requiring a robotic platform featuring a low-inertia.

Researchers reported a Dubbed Quad-Morphing robot can reach a typical transversal speed of 4-5 km/h in indoor conditions andup to 9 km/h in external conditions.Each robot is equipped with a Quad-Morphing autopilot mechanism that controls its arms' positions, switching orientations whenCNRS's 3D localization system identifies an upcoming tight passage to be crossed.

This Aerial Robot Can Change Its Shape Mid-Flight

To fit through a narrow space — between two trees, for example — an aerial robot would have to rotate its entire body 90 degrees, so that it was vertical with the ground.

If a real-life flying bird approaches that narrow tree gap, all it has to do is pull its wings closer to its body for as long as it takes to pass through.

A combination of elastic and rigid wires attach the arms to its body, which give the robot the ability to retract those arms, cutting its wingspan by 48 percent in just 250 milliseconds.

It also managed to do so at a speed of 9 kmh (5.6 mph), which the researchers characterize in a press release as “pretty fast for an aerial robot.”

An autopilot mechanism controls the extension and retraction of Quad-Morphing’s arms as needed, but the bot relied on the testing room’s 3D localization system — a series of 17 cameras recording its every move — to know when it was approaching the narrow gap.

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