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ATRIAS Bipedal Robot Endures Dodgeball Pummeling [Video]

ATRIAS Dodgeball

This new video of the ATRIAS robot shows the bipedal machine doing a two-step while researchers pummel it with dodgeballs in preparation for the DARPA robotics challenge scheduled for June.

Researchers are pummeling ATRIAS, which is an acronym for Assume The Robot Is A Sphere, in an attempt to test its stability. Ultimately, the goal of the researchers at Oregon State University’s Dynamics Robotics Laboratory behind the machine is to create a robot capable of traversing outdoor terrain with a spring-mass system, which Popular Science notes in a report to be the same type of system found in a pogo stick.

In the video, the robot is eventually defeated by the barrage of dodgeballs after one of the balls manages to strike the emergency shutoff button located on the side of the bipedal bot. Otherwise, ATRIAS did well against its dodgeball challenges as it soaked up the hits with what appeared to be little effort.

Last week, the robotics team at OSU published a video in which they kicked the robot in yet another stability test.

Collaborating ATRIAS investigators include Dr. Jonathan Hurst with OSU, Dr. Hartmut Geyer at Carnegie Mellon University, and Dr. Jessy Grizzle with the University of Michigan.

The research project is funded by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), the Human Frontier Science Program (HFSP), and the National Science Foundation (NSF).

The robot utilizes four carbon-fiber shafts attached to elastic fiberglass springs in order to bounce around.

ATRIAS is designed for speed and flexibility. Its design is an attempt to emulate the running style of birds which spend most of their time on the ground, such as chickens.

Jonathan Hurst, an associate professor and robotic expert at OSU, was quoted by the National Monitor as having said that the robot “will be the fastest pipedal robot in the world” once it gets up to speed for walking.

When this robot gets up to speed for walking, not even running yet, it will be the fastest bipedal robot in the world

What are your thoughts on this speedy chicken-esque robot?

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