This paper aims to provide an insight into robot developments that use bioinspired design concepts.
Following a short introduction to biomimetics, this paper first provides examples of bioinspired terrestrial, aerial and underwater robot navigation techniques. It then discusses bioinspired locomotion and considers a selection of robotic products and developments inspired by snakes, bats, diving birds, fish and dragonflies. Finally, brief concluding comments are drawn.
The application of design concepts that mimic the capabilities and processes found in living creatures can impart robots with unique abilities. Bioinspired techniques used by insects and other organisms, notably optic flow and sunlight polarisation sensing, allow robots to navigate without the need for methods such as simultaneous localisation and mapping, GPS or inertial measurement units. Bioinspired locomotion techniques have yielded robots capable of operating in water, air and on land and in some cases, making the transition between different media.
This shows how bioinspired design concepts can impart robots with innovative and enhanced navigation and locomotion capabilities.
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