My robots are inspired by mechanisms
of Animal Walking ,
spent much of my scientific career studying and
explaining the neural mechanisms which control animal
Since I began my career studying crabs, and because crabs have their own unique "sideways" pattern of walking, I became attached to these beasties. Therefore, I was inspired to create a robot which uses a similar pattern, thus...
animal anatomy and movement as inspiration, but
adapt as necessary to make the
Phase I. Design, build, and operate a single leg, which will produce a "crab-like"
My leg-design research led me to the work of Theo Jansen, whose "animals" are very large, completely mechanical, and use the wind for power. His basic leg design is complex however, and difficult to adapt to my needs. Then I came across the work of Joseph Klann (Mechanical Spider), who uses a patented leg design which is simpler, and suited my needs better. A third source of design and inspiration was "Crab-Fu", who has buit a series of three-legged designs, which are elegant and beautiful, but lack the bi-lateral symmetries and inter-leg coordination found in most animals.
The end result of this process was a single leg system which moves in a very "biological" pattern, and which suits my overall principles. It is driven by a standard servo (modified for continuous rotation), and speed control is through an inexpensive hobby Radio-Control transmitter/receiver. The leg design and linkage was taken directly from the patented "Klann-Leg" design (with permission, of course).
is a short video of the leg in action. This is an
early version, but illustrates the basic design
and movement. Note that the tip of the leg stays
parallel to (and in contact with) the ground
during the power-stroke phase, and the lifts clear
of the ground during the return-stroke, to get
into position for the next step in the cycle.
Phase I: Completed
II. Design, build, and
operate a 6-legged Crab-Bot platform, which walks in
a coordinated "alternating tripod" gait.
the legs designed in Phase I, I
will design and build a standing, sideways-walking
Current Status of
Phase II: One 3-Leg Unit completed, with
1. Complete 3-Leg Unit (one side of crab),in
operation with "alternating-tripod" gait.
Complete 3-Leg Unit (one side of crab),showing cam
drive mechanism, driven by single
Phase III and Beyond...
Future challenges will be to design a Crab-Bot system which can raise and lower the body on command, from "rest" to a "standing" posture, and which can turn, and walk in curved paths. Ultimately, the dream is to have an autonomous walking robot, with path control and obstacle avoidance walking over an uneven terrain.
Status of Phase III: Planning and Dreaming Underway