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Robodog uses magnetic ‘paws’ to CLIMB up partitions and across ceilings

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The fear of killer robots dominating human civilization is one step closer to reality with a latest robotdog that climbs up partitions and across ceilings.

Developed on the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, the MARVEL quadrupedal robot features magnetic feet that magnetize and demagnetize on demand.

Switching between the 2 settings allows the robot to maintain one foot attached to the wall or ceiling while releasing the opposite to the following spot.

It moves 1.6 feet per second while climbing up a wall and two feet per second when traveling across the ceiling.

MARVEL could seem more just like the killer robodog in Black Mirror, but its inventors foresee the innovation helping repair bridges, industrial tanks and buildings.

The robodog, called MARVEL, can travel greater than one-foot per second up a wall. It uses magnetic pads on its fit to keep on with surfaces

‘It demonstrates the fastest vertical and inverted walking speed, whereas its versatile locomotion ability enables the best variety of gaits and locomotion tasks,’ researchers shared within the study published in ScienceRobotics

MARVEL (magnetically adhesive robot for versatile and expeditious locomotion) is designed like the standard robodog with 4 legs and a torso filled with electronics, but this one, particularly, has magnetics built into its feet.

The magnets are designed as a rubber, nonslippery footpad that sticks to surfaces while motors move the mammal-like legs. 

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The electromagnets will be turned on or off electronically and consist of a everlasting magnet and a soft core that a surrounding coil can magnetize. 

In line with Hackaday, activating and deactivating the magnets only requires a slight pulse of electricity. 

It weighs around 18 kilos and may carry as much as six kilos of cargo on its back.

And it’s able to operating with no tether.

Researchers said MARVEL can travel across ceilings at two feet per second and can also be in a position to walk backward down a wall. 

The team compares how the robot moves and switches between feet much like a gecko climbing up a surface. 

‘These foot design features allowed the robot to use large forces to the environments without detaching, slipping, or tipping over of the foot,’ reads the study. 

In experiments, MARVEL was able to lugging 4 kilos up partitions and 7 kilos across a ceiling.

‘MARVEL’s potential application is to analyze industrial sites, akin to steel-structured buildings, bridges, ships, or storage tanks,’ the study reads.

‘These sites inevitably involve tasks at high altitudes or confined spaces, akin to the inspection of steel bridges or shipyard welding platforms, which may very well be dangerous for human employees.’ 

Researchers also tested MARVEL on an industrial tank made from steel with spots of thick pain to see how the robot would react.

MARVEL (magnetically adhesive robot for versatile and expeditious locomotion) is designed like the typical robodog with four legs and a torso packed with electronics

MARVEL (magnetically adhesive robot for versatile and expeditious locomotion) is designed like the standard robodog with 4 legs and a torso filled with electronics

MARVEL can also travel across ceilings, all which carrying up to six pounds of payload on its back

MARVEL may travel across ceilings, all which carrying as much as six kilos of payload on its back

The team compares how the robot moves and switches between feet similar to a gecko climbing up a surface

The team compares how the robot moves and switches between feet much like a gecko climbing up a surface

Not only did MARVEL sidestep over the pain, however the tank’s surface was rough and curved, and the robodog’s ‘magnetic feet provided sufficient holding force without slipping.’

‘Using the passive compliant ankle, the foot could even adapt to curved steel substrates compliantly and without slipping or tipping over, as shown within the experiments conducted on the curved surface of the storage tank,’ researchers shared within the study. 

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