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China Daily:Innovative robot learns how to walk
来源:China Daily 2018-03-05 05 作者:LI WENFANG 编辑:朱小翠

Huang Zhifeng adjusts his biped robot, which is able to take a big step while keeping its balance. [Photo by LI WENFANG/CHINA DAILY]

Forget about the robot soldiers marching through the human world in sci-fi movies. Two-legged robots in reality are mostly able to take only short steps and they're prone to falls.

But a robotic biped developed at Guangdong University of Technology is able to take a big step while maintaining balance thanks to ducted fans fixed to its feet.

Jet-HR1, the robot, resembles the lower part of a human body. It's 65 centimeters tall and weighs 6.5 kilograms. It can cross a gap of 45 cm, or 97 percent of its leg length, making a move like doing the splits.

This results in higher efficiency than the 20 percent of leg length commonly seen in other humanoid robots, said Huang Zhifeng, vice-dean of the university's Department of Automation, who has led the research over the past two years.

Crossing distances may sound easy for humans, who can mitigate the chances of falling through the use of dynamic walking, or constantly falling forward.

For the less dynamic, or quasi-static, robot, it presents a significant challenge because the longer the step, the more its center of gravity moves toward the leg taking the step, and the greater the chance of falling.

A ducted fan jet engine weighs 232 grams but can produce up to 2 kg of thrust-one-third of the total weight of the Jet-HR1. The magnitude of the propulsion is calculated so that the robot can make different moves in different conditions.

The robot was depicted in a recent article published in IEEE Spectrum, the flagship magazine of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, a major international professional organization.

Huang was studying in Japan when that country was hit by a massive earthquake and tsunami in 2011, and he noticed the weak performance of robots in relief efforts at the damaged Fukushima nuclear power plant.

As a fan of the international robot competitions organized by the United States Department of Defense in 2013 and 2015, Huang is aware of the weaknesses in even the winning robots.

Robots are often focused on a single action, such as climbing, he said.

"We tend not to do follow-up research but rather like to start a new subject, take a new direction. In a new direction, we may face new problems. We address them and will have a brand-new thing," he said.

"To this end, you have to be bold, because people may see it as impossible or meaningless. But when you make a successful first step, they will see the effect and recognize the way you do it. And you move forward."

In experiments, the Jet-HR1 is logging about 50 percent success. To improve its performance, it needs better engines and better systems for maintaining balance. If put in a real situation, it needs to be fixed with a microcomputer for calculation and a sensor for judging distances.

A longer-term goal for Huang's team is to enable the robot to jump to a higher floor of a building. The jet engines help reduce the impact when the robot performs dynamic motions, he said.

"Good research takes at least 10 years," Huang said.

The robot should be adaptable to demanding situations, such as performing work in an earthquake-damaged area or on the surface of another planet, he said.




机器人士兵能够在科幻电影中穿越人间世界行动自如,其实在现实中的双腿机器人大多只能以小碎步向前行走,而且容易摔倒。但365bet官网-365bet体育在线网址 -365bet体育在线投注的实验人员用小型涵道风机固定在他们研发的机器人Biped的双足上并进行实验,结果机器人Biped能够在大跨步的时候保持平衡。





一个涵道风扇喷气发动机重232克,但可以产生高达2公斤的推力,也就是三分之一的Jet-HR1总重量。计算一个涵道风扇喷气发动机推进的大小,以便机器人可以在不同的条件下进行不同的移动。该机器人的成果最近被发表在了国际专业组织IEEE电子和电子工程师学会的核心期刊IEEE Spectrum上。




“一个好的研究方向至少需要10年不断研究下去,”黄之峰说, “机器人应该适应要求苛刻的情况,例如在地震受损区域或其他行星表面工作。”(袁为忠 译