Carnegie Mellon University’s NanoRobotics lab has devised a robotic water strider. The insects can travel 100 body lengths per second, which would be equal to a human running 400 mph. The team uses micro-actuators and motors to create the movement so that it can walk and bounce on still water. We expect that the military will snap them up before Whammo can turn them into toys. After all, who would suspect that the enemy would place a mini recording device on a common bug?
Read More | NanoRobotics Lab
Our latest find in RC toys is the Mecha Mushi. At a size of 1.7 x 3.6 x 6.5-inches, the insect with foam body is available in silver or rainbow hues, with separate frequencies for each. Its internal battery is chargeable by connection to its remote. The MM is designed for internal flight, so make sure you bring it along to work to see if your co-workers are paying attention. Available for pre-order at a price of $79.00, the bug requires 6 AAA batteries to fly.
Read More | CScout
While we are on the subject of creepy things that go bump in the night, take a peek at Harold Ilano’s Mercury, named for the light-seeker. Made from an old Playstation, a Li-Poly 3.6 V cell phone battery, and a few analog components. The robotic bug zig-zags across your floor, seeking the light via its sensors, and pauses occasionally to regroup. Red LEDs were added to keep people from tripping over it in the dark and because it, in Ilano’s own words, “makes him look cool.” The designer was kind enough to post instructions if you want to make your own horde of robotic insects.
Read More | Make