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Images: How to clone a robot

Scientists at Cornell University have created small robots that can build copies of themselves.

How to clone a robot

The modules of Cornell University's self-replicating robot are cubes about 4 inches on a side. They are able to swivel along a diagonal.

Credit: Cornell University

cube

How to clone a robot

This sequence of photos, taken from a video, shows the process of self-replication. The robot removes one section of itself which becomes the base for the new robot. The remaining three cubes then pick up additional cubes from feeding stations to build the new robot.

Credit: Cornell University

duplication

How to clone a robot

This cutaway drawing shows the robots' motor mechanism.

Credit: Cornell University

diagram

How to clone a robot

This column of cubes is held together by magnets and is able to bend and twist to pick up and set down individual cubes.

Credit: Cornell University

swivel

How to clone a robot

The Cornell University research team was led by mathematics graduate student Bryant Adams (left), Hod Lipson (center) and mechanical engineeering graduate student Victor Zykov.

Credit: Kevin Stearns/University Photography, Cornell University

the team