Cyber Zoo – new TU Delft lab with flying and crawling robots04 March 2014 by webredactie M&C
The TU Delft Cyber Zoo opens on Wednesday 5 March. The Cyber Zoo is a new research and test laboratory for flying and walking swarm robots. The flying dragonfly robot DelFly and the six-legged walking robot Zebro will be working together there, carrying out tasks in all kinds of different environments without the help of people.
Swarm robots work in a way that is comparable to that of a colony of ants. In themselves, the robots are relatively simple, but in a group, they are capable of performing complex tasks, such as carrying out measurements and making observations. Examples that come to mind are inspecting buildings on the verge of collapse, or pipe systems located on the ceilings of factories. In addition, swarm robots can help farmers wishing to know how their crops are progressing, for example.
Mars landscape with motion capture system
The Cyber Zoo, the new TU lab in the aircraft hangar at the Faculty of Aerospace Engineering, is a ten by ten-metre space in which swarm robots have all the room they need to interact. Obstacles in the form of Martian craters create challenges for the crawling robots, and a seven-metre high net prevents flying robots from escaping. Meanwhile, twelve high-tech cameras are used to analyse how the crawling and flying robots move and work together. This means the 3D coordinates and postures of the robots can be analysed accurately, after experiments.
Delft Robotics Institute
Cyber Zoo is an initiative of the TU Delft Robotics Institute. The institute unites and connects all the research in the field of robotics at TU Delft. The challenge for the Robotics Institute is to bring about effective collaboration between people and robots in all kinds of different environments. The institute’s three themes are robot swarms, robots that work, and interactive robots.