It looks like SOTAB 1 isn’t the only bot that will soon be attacking oil spills. Designer Ji-hoon Kim’s OSP robots may look like Roombas but love the water. Each has a computer system that plans and controls its motions, a GPS system and radio antenna to communicate with its fellow modules, boom connectors for hooking up to others, a solar panel to collect energy, and an inflatable boom that rolls out for protection. With their small size, they can be moved quickly to the site by boat or helicopter. We hope this is one prototype that becomes real before the next large oil spill.
Read More | Yanko
For the hunters in your life that still don’t get it that it is not okay to kill animals for sport or clothing, this prototype collection by designer/robotics teacher French Cadet is the gift for them. Walk in a room and the eleven Hunting Trophies will flash their eyes in red, orange, or green, turn their heads and move them up and down, and open and close their mouths. Here’s where the payback comes in. The closer the visitor gets, the more aggressive the bots become and will growl. Walk past them all and a chain reaction of snarling will occur. Created out of I-Cybie robots and individual programming, they each have an infrared sensor that can detect the amount of people in the room and their movements.
Read More | Trophees
Researchers from Osaka University have developed SOTAB 1 (Spilled Oil Tracking Autonomous Buoy 1) with imaging sensors that can spot globs from a distance. The GPS bot dives down and when it senses something that resembles oil, floats back to the surface and “swims” towards the oil spill. SOTAB then helps cleanup crews by providing data on wind speed, and depth and temperature of the water. Still in the developmental stage, head researcher Naomi Kato hopes the 243 lb. robot will be available commercially in a couple of years.
Read More | Pink Tentacle
U.S. scientists from the Wood’s Hole Oceanographic Institute (WHOi) in the UK have been researching an underwater robotic glider that harvests heat energy from the Caribbean. Tested since December, the device has gone thousands of kilometers without batteries. The team feels that the capsule could undertake surveys for up to six months, although it still needs batteries for data retrieval, sensors and its satellite communications system. Still, we applaud the WHOi in its green efforts and hope the fish and tourists don’t mind.
Read More | BBC
Zoe is learning cartography. The robot contains a hard disk with a basic map with data from ASTER (Astrobiology Science and Technology for Exploring Planets,) an infrared spectrometer on NASA’s Earth Observing Satellite. It works on about a kilometer of area at a time and takes one astral image/second. So far the bot is working on differentiating clay from basalt, with the researchers hoping that someday a similar device could be sent to a planet like Mars, where we won’t be tripping around for quite some time. Zoe has already mastered avoiding obstacles and fair-field sensing, simple for humans, but not for bots.
Read More | Space Daily
Hook up Mr. Jones’ Tengu to your USB port and he will light up and lip sync to music, voices or any other noise you prefer with no additional software. He features different expressions, depending on what he spits out, and goes to sleep when there is nothing to talk or sing about. He also responds to loud noises and interference by outside sources such as you blowing on him. We dig the little guy’s YouTube audition which includes the Beatles’ “I’m Only Sleeping.” Get your own pet Tengu for £24.99 (~$36.00.)
Read More | Tengu