German automation company Festo has added to its collection of robots inspired by nature with its BionicKangaroo.
Wired and others report that BionicKangaroo was created over two years, has a body constructed out of foam, and is pneumatic/electric driven.
An elastic spring acts in a similar way to a real kangaroo’s tendon, harnessing some of the energy from each “hop” to be used in the next. It can jump 0.4 metres vertically and 0.8 metres across, according to Festo, and weighs only 7 kilograms. IEEE Spectrum notes that it is controlled by a Thalmic Labs Myo armband.
The official unveiling of Festo’s creation will be at the Hannover Messe fair next week.