Tech UPTechnologyThis robot jumps higher than any machine or living...

This robot jumps higher than any machine or living being


A unique machine. A jumping robot to beat them all. Animals have been a source of inspiration for engineers for decades. Previous studies have investigated how some of nature’s most prolific jumpers (such as the tiny grasshopper, an insect that can leap 115 times its body length) manage to propel themselves so high into the air. Now, it has been no different.


small but powerful

This robot has been designed by scientist Elliot Hawkes of the University of California, Santa Barbara, and his colleagues. The robot is only 30 centimeters long, but it can jump to a height of 32.9 meters propelled by a skeleton with carbon fiber springs; that is, he can jump more than 100 times his own height.

The expert states that the maximum jump height of animals is limited by the work that their muscles can produce in a single blow. But the new robot uses a small motor to stretch its springs over many rotations. It jumps only when it has stored a large amount of energy.


engineering work

The jumps force both engineers and evolution to deal with some basic physical limitations of power generation.

“The jump height of a biological jumper is limited by the work its linear motor (muscle) can produce in a single stroke. In contrast, the jump height of an engineered device can be much greater because its rotary motor or ratcheting can ‘multiply work’ during repeated movements or rotations,” the researchers explain.

At 30 grams and 30 centimeters , it uses a gear system to slowly compress the springs; later, this energy is quickly released to launch the robot into the sky.

“We created a device that can jump more than 30 meters high, to the best of our knowledge much higher than previously designed jumpers and an order of magnitude higher than the best biological jumpers,” the authors write in their study published in the journal Nature . .

The best explorer for the Moon

Hawkes says that the same robot on our satellite, the Moon, could reach heights of 125 meters and cover about half a kilometer per jump, making it the ideal exploration machine.

“The moon is a truly ideal place to jump. The gravity is one-sixth that of Earth, and there’s basically no air.”

But on Earth we could also put it to interesting uses. On Earth , jumping robots could overcome obstacles previously only managed by flying robots or drones, to collect images of the ground, according to the team.

What is unknown, at the moment, is the cost of developing a jumping robot or if they plan to launch it on the market.

Referencia: Elliot W. Hawkes, Charles Xiao, Richard-Alexandre Peloquin, Christopher Keeley, Matthew R. Begley, Morgan T. Pope & Günter Niemeyer . Engineered jumpers overcome biological limits via work multiplication. Article Published: 27 April 2022 Nature volume 604, pages 657–661 (2022) DOI:


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