A newly created real-life Transformer is capable of reconfiguring its body to achieve eight distinct types of motion and can autonomously assess the environment it faces to choose the most effective combination of motions to manoeuvre.
Robot designs can take many inspirations from nature, where there are many examples of highly resilient and fault-tolerant locomotion strategies to navigate complex terrains by recruiting multi-functional appendages. For example, birds such as Chukars and Hoatzins can repurpose wings for quadrupedal walking and wing-assisted incline running.
These animals showcase impressive dexterity in employing the same appendages in different ways and generating multiple modes of locomotion, resulting in highly plastic locomotion traits which enable them to interact and navigate various environments and expand their habitat range.
The robotic biomimicry of animals’....