Biomimetic robots borrow their structure and senses from animals, such as birds or insects. Their abilities are copied from earth's greatest examples of success, living organisms; they tend to function better in the unpredictable real world than the controlled artifice of a laboratory.
However, those robots do not completely copy
from animals, we actually extract those most useful abilities, that is, we may make some modifications on the body structure of the robots in order to make our designs more practical.
The most well-known early biomimetic robots were a lobster.
This model is established in the 1970s by Joseph Ayers, a biology professor at Northeastern University. The actions of real lobsters have been reverse-engineered and programmed into a library of actions which give the robotic lobster a similar behavior as the real ones.
Extract some certain special characteristics from animals
Design the similar robots
Utilize such robots to finish some special works
In this case, we can see that the scientist attempts to copy the structure of a worm (caterpillar), using soft materials and incorporating them into a new type of highly flexible robot. These robots will possibly have applications in biomedical diagnosis and surgery, emergency rescue and exploration, and for monitoring or repairing space vehicles.
What about more smaller ones? What if we could imitate the body structure and the behavior of small insects like mosquito or bee? We can use such robots in certain circumstance as tiny space where human and traditional robots can not work. Or they can be used in military affairs. They can perfectly finish a investigation task without alarming anyone. Moreover, they can also search for survivors after earthquake.
Fishlike Robot Fishlike robot is currently a very popular topic. Simulating the unique model of action of fishes, we can design a robot which can use fin and tail to generate vortex, it can swim like a fish in the water. We then could use these robots to do some special investigations underwater.
Control algorithm for the snakelike mechanism Interaction forces along the snakelike mechanisms in simultaneous contact with three push-points Curve fitting with three simultaneous contact points
Eight intermediary configurations with initial (1) and final (8) conditions of the mechanism for a given trajectory. Red points indicate the contacted push-points. (For interpretation of the references to color in this figure legend, the reader is referred to the web version of this article.