Humanoid Robotics Challenge

❓Did you know that....

➡ Humans have always found inspiration to develop new #technologies in nature? Due to the significant progress of #Robotics and #AI in the last decades, we can now build #robots that resemble us, namely #humanoid robots.

➡Various types of #mobile robots perform #locomotion in different ways: wheeled robots roll on wheels, aerial robots fly with a set of rotors, underwater robots swim using underwater designed thrusters and legged robots walk using the alternate motion of their legs.

#Humanoid robots are part of the #legged robots class, which is strongly based on the knowledge gained over decades with robotic #manipulator arms used in factories and assembly lines.

➡Designing these robots is challenging, mainly concerning their physical #intelligence and the motions they can perform, e.g. stable walking. Stable walking on uneven terrain is still a work in progress and when we think from an evolutionary perspective, it is not an easy task. Even we, humans, need about one year to learn upright bipedal walking!

➡To walk, humanoids are equipped with a large set of #sensors and #actuators. The joint encoders measure the position of the robot body #joints, contact sensors on the feet to sense the contact with the ground, Inertial Measurement Unit (#IMU) detect the body #velocities and #accelerations as well as #camera or #laser scanner sensors perceive the environment.

➡One of the forerunners of humanoid robotics at the beginning of the 21st century is the #Asimo robot from Honda developed in Japan.

➡Another example is #Atlas, the state-of-the-art humanoid robot developed by Boston Dynamics. It has impressive physical agility and can achieve highly dynamic motions, such as jumping and performing #backflips (

➡Humanoids are not always large or meant for assisting with heavy-duty tasks. For example, the #social robot NAO from SoftBank Robotics can not only walk, but also #dance or perform Tai Chi (

#Germany is also making great strides in this area, with the robot #TORO developed by the German Aerospace Center (DLR) and #LOLA from the Technical University of Munich (TUM).

➡To know more about humanoids, check out this lecture on Humanoid Robotics from the The University of Bonn

Contributing Editor: Mihaela Popescu, Women in AI & Robotics#Bremen volunteer.

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