The iStruct Demonstrator makes several advances in robotics, including its high-tech feet.
Roboticists at the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI) have built a robot called the iStruct Demonstrator that walks on its knuckles like an ape’s robot twin.
The new robot, a 40 pound hulk of somewhat frightening-looking metal, makes several steps forward in robotics, with advanced features that distinguish it from most of its robot contemporaries.
While most robots have flat feet and must shuffle-walk, the iStruct Demonstrator has a heel-toe step. The complex feet work through a combination of 43 pressure sensors, six sensors used for collision detection, a 6-axis force sensor, and a distance sensor in the heel that can anticipate the heel strike. The walking system also includes a digital 3-axis accelerometer that understands the orientation of the foot structure and digital magnetic angular encoders that can monitor the movement of the foot and ankle structure.
High-tech feet: all the better to lumber after us with.
The iStruct Demonstrator doesn't move particularly fast, but it can balance on its own and fluidly make transitions to travel in multiple directions.