Category: Adhesion

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  1. 1. MicroTugs
    1. 1.1 MicroTugs in the News
    2. 1.2 Contact
    3. 1.3 Publications
    4. 1.4 Images and Media

1.  MicroTugs

This work demonstrates a new type of small robot that can apply orders of magnitude more force than it weighs. This is in stark contrast to previous small robots that have become progressively better at moving and sensing, but lacked the ability to change the world through the application of human-scale loads.

The work focuses on two major variants: a 12g ground based robot that can pull 40N in shear force, and a 9g climbing variant that can climb while carrying 10N of load. The papers discuss the controllable adhesive technology that makes these feats possible, as well as the constraints it puts on the designs and actuators. The ground based paper focuses on the concept of small robots with large loads, and the actuator work cycles necessary to enable these capabilities. The Climbing paper focuses on the anisotropic adhesion that is necessary to allow these robots to carry the continuous load present when there is no static friction in between steps.

Markup makes downsized image show on page, but you get large image if you click it -MRC

A 12g micro robot uses controllable adhesive (like an Ants use) to pull 2 thousand of times its weight. This is the equivalent of a human adult dragging a blue whale around on land. Ant image courtesy of Dr Thomas Endlein.The 9g climbing robot can carry over a kilogram vertically up glass. This is equivalent to a human climbing up a skyscraper while carrying an elephant.

1.1  MicroTugs in the News

-We Passed well over a Million combined video views!!

1.2  Contact

David Christensen (davidc10@stanford.edu) is a 5th year PhD Student at Stanford working on finishing up his thesis on this work as well as other micro robotics applications. He has also studied gecko adhesives manufacturing, MEMS sensors, actuators, robotics and manufacturing generally, and many other things in related spaces:

Elliot Hawkes is a 6th Year PhD Student finishing up a thesis on macro uses of the adhesive technology, the bulk of which enabled the human climbing with gecko adhesive project (http://bdml.stanford.edu/Main/Climb) that was featured in the New York Times as well as many other news venues.

Other students involved in the project are Arul Suresh, Karen Ladenheim (who did much of the best video and photograph work)

This work, along with Elliot's thesis work was exhibited at TED 2015 Vancouver.

1.3  Publications

  • µTugs: Enabling Microrobots to Deliver Macro Forces with Controllable Adhesives, IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), 2015 : JRSI Paper
  • Vertical Dry Adhesive Climbing with a 100x bodyweight payoad, IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), 2015 : JRSI Paper
  • Other BDML adhesion publications

1.4  Images and Media

Any of these images may be copied and reused with attribution of the source: Biomimetics and Dexterous Manipulation Lab, Stanford University

David Christensen and Ground MicroTug on left, Elliot Hawkes and Climbing MicroTug on right. Photocredit Greg Campbell

Photocredits: Karen Ladenheim

Photocredits: Karen Ladenheim

Photocredits: Karen Ladenheim

Photocredits: David Christensen

Cute Animated schematic video

Photocredits: David Christensen

Photocredits: David Christensen

Photocredits: Elliot Hawkes and David Christensen

Photocredits: David Christensen

Elliot: The files are now installed. The URL for each uses the preface http://bdml.stanford.edu/pages/Adhesion/ followed by the file name. I assume you want to use the "description? (XXMB tiff)" syntax for each.

Page last modified on April 28, 2016, at 10:54 AM