Turning to robots to pull off dangerous aerial feats - TECH NEWS


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Friday, 20 July 2018

Turning to robots to pull off dangerous aerial feats

have you ever heard of Stickman? It’s a 7-foot-tall swinging robot performer who weighs simply around 40 pounds, can execute backflips, after which determine on his own whilst to untuck and land flat on its back.

First revealed in may, Stickman become an early version of a fearless robot performer, at the same time as the newest synthetic acrobatic figure that Disney has shown off is in a class they call “Stuntronics.” They’re constructing flying machines like those for a pair reasons. First, these robots can obtain feats that would be too difficult or risky for a human to do. What’s greater, machines can perform time and again without getting worn-out. (That’s an amazing purpose for a agency to apply robotics: as an example, at a wellknown cars foundry in Michigan, a big robot pours engine blocks out of burning hot liquid aluminum.)

another reason has to do with taking the sort of laptop-generated feats people see in Disney films and bringing them into the actual global. in any case, it’s more secure to create a robot Iron man or Thor than it would be to educate human acrobats to emulate the ones characters’ feats. “We’d love to do some thing that’s no longer just human, but past human,” says Morgan Pope, an companion studies scientist with Disney research. “The desire right here is that we’re handing over something physical and tangible, instead of virtual and virtual.”

Flying robots
Disney already has people appearing stunts at locations like Shanghai Disneyland. And of path, they already have animatronic figures, but the ones men aren’t exactly made to fly. Take the “Shaman” character in an “Avatar”-themed appeal in Florida, as an instance. “It’s a very, very sophisticated, very, very expressive animatronic parent,” says Tony Dohi, a principle R&D “imagineer” with Walt Disney Imagineering studies and development. “but it’s virtually now not something we’d need to throw ninety ft throughout an outdoor area.”

however not like the Shaman, Stickman-like bots are designed to fly. A body with three sections and two bendy joints, Stickman can maneuver into a tucked position with the aid of activating pneumatic cylinders powered by using pressurized air. Its onboard brain includes a microcontroller, and two key sensor structures help it parent out what its frame is doing in area. while it's far within the tucked position, it rotates faster, like the manner a discern skater spins quicker when she pulls her arms in.

One of those sensors is referred to as an IMU, or inertial dimension unit, which consists of accelerometers and gyroscopes. “It’s our simplest and first-rate size for orientation, and it gives us an estimate of position as well,” Pope says.

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