Princeton researchers have revolutionized the field of soft robotics with the development of their latest creation, the eViper robot. Unlike traditional robots that rely on legs or rotary parts, the eViper utilizes actuators powered by the piezoelectric effect, resulting in a flexible and energy efficient design.
Instead of relying on rigid bodies, soft robots like the eViper have the advantage of flexibility, making them ideal for various applications such as surgery and space exploration. However, designing and controlling soft bodies present unique engineering challenges.
The eViper overcomes these challenges by harnessing the piezoelectric effect. Through carefully timed pulses of electrical energy, the actuators in the robot convert this energy into mechanical energy, allowing the eViper to move and wiggle. With each pulse, the flexible body of the robot bends in different ways, enabling it to navigate from one point to another.
By incorporating advanced power electronics designs, embedded sensors, and control systems, the team at Princeton successfully created a fully untethered soft robot that rivals the energy efficiency of land animals. The eViper is a significant step forward in making robotic systems more energy efficient to meet the growing demands of the future.
The groundbreaking research conducted by the team has garnered significant attention and recognition. Their latest paper, presented at the 2023 IEEE International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS), was among the finalists for a best paper award. These accomplishments highlight the immense potential of the eViper and its impact on the field of soft robotics.
Moving forward, the eViper platform paves the way for further exploration of electrical, mechanical, and power co-design to maximize energy efficiency in future robotic systems. With its flexible and lightweight design, the eViper has the potential to revolutionize various industries, from healthcare to space exploration.
Q: What is unique about the eViper robot?
A: The eViper robot utilizes actuators powered by the piezoelectric effect, resulting in a flexible and energy efficient design.
Q: What makes soft robots different from traditional robots?
A: Soft robots have flexible bodies, which enable them to perform tasks that rigid-body robots are incapable of.
Q: How does the eViper move without legs or rotary parts?
A: The eViper relies on carefully timed pulses of electrical energy that cause its flexible body to bend in different ways, resulting in movement and wiggling.
Q: What are the potential applications of soft robots?
A: Soft robots have a wide range of applications, including surgery, space exploration, and tasks that require delicate handling.
Q: What recognition has the eViper received?
A: The research conducted by the Princeton team has received attention and recognition, with their latest paper being a finalist for a best paper award at the 2023 IEEE International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS).