American engineers demonstrated the skills of the four-legged robot ALPHRED2 with an unusual design. His legs can bend in both directions, as well as rotate relative to each other, which allows, for example, to use three legs to move, and one to push the door, or two legs in order to stand still, and two more to move small objects , says IEEE Spectrum.
Most four-legged robots have a similar design: their legs consist of two segments, and in addition, often the attachment of the legs to the body can rotate. In this case, the legs can often bend only in one direction, which greatly limits the capabilities of the robot. In addition, the legs are usually adapted to be bent to one specific side. For example, this design is used in robots American Spot and Chinese AlienGo.
Engineers from the University of California at Berkeley introduced the four-legged robot ALPHRED2 with an unusual design for such robots. It has four identical legs fixed on vertical motorized loops. Each leg has three segments, and small folding sections are installed at the end of each leg. On two legs there are two such sections, and on two more one by one. They can simultaneously rotate and allow the robot to stand on two legs, so it does not fall on its side.
The robot can move on a flat surface on four legs at a speed of up to one and a half meters per second. In addition, the developers showed that the robot can use more unusual methods of movement. For example, they fixed the wheels on its body and demonstrated how the robot rides forward, pushing all legs off the floor.
Previously, engineers already showed other four-legged robots moving in an unusual way. For example, Swiss developers created the four-legged robot Skaterbot and taught him how to ride ice skating on ice, while maintaining balance.