Robot Gecko Climbing Technology

May 23, 2006

gecko-bot.jpgStanford researchers have been developing a robot that can climb up walls in a similar fashion to that of geckos. Geckos can climb walls and ceilings thanks to tiny hairs on their feet, called setae, that are attracted to surfaces by an "intermolecular force" known as "van der Waals force." The Stickybot has large flexible feet with synthetic setae made from elastomer. This synthetic setae replicate the van der Waals force, and the size and shape of the feet permit the robot to climb vertical surfaces. Check the video to see it in action. Proposed uses for the technology include planetary rover, rescue robot, and "awesome super hero robot that can climb walls and shoot webs and fight crime and also it's like my best friend and it hangs out and plays video games with me."


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