main article image
Carnegie Mellon University

WATCH: This Creepy Hexapod Has Robot Snakes For Legs

29 DECEMBER 2014

This extremely dexterous hexapod above may look like a regular spiderbot (albeit with only six legs), but its legs are actually made from highly controllable robotic snakes. 

 

Its creators over at Carnegie Mellon University in the US have appropriately nicknamed the device “Snake Monster”, and it uses the same technology that created these side-winding robotic snakes below. 

The team explains in the description of their video: “The series-elastic actuators in each joint allow simultaneous position-velocity-torque control, enabling compliant motions using a simple alternating-tripod walking gait.”

We're not entirely sure what all that means. But, as you can see in the footage above, the result of that is a slightly creepy but super-resilient robot that can clamber over obstacles and withstand being kicked, squashed and shoved by the scientists.

The project is being funded by the US’s defence research agency DARPA, which conjures up futuristic visions of snake monsters one day storming battlefields or running in to help victims during conflict. But there's no word as yet on what the purpose of these nimble robots will be.

As long as those legs don’t start wiggling off on their own or growing back after being cut off, we guess we're OK with them.

Sources: c|net, io9, Gizmodo