A University of California Davis spinoff is commercializing a modular robot that will let robotics researchers study fields like robot AI, biomimetics, and robot collaboration without having to build the hardware.
Barobo's iMobot, developed by Graham Ryland and Harry Cheng, is meant to fill a gap in the market for research-grade modular machines.
As seen below, each iMobot module can crawl or roll around, and stand up. Cameras could be incorporated into the rotating faceplate joints, according to the researchers.
The modules could hook up to formto wriggle over uneven terrain, or a larger assembly that could move on wheels.
Each module has standard mounts so other modules and sensors can be added in unlimited configurations.
The start-up received a small-business innovation research grant from the National Science Foundation, and it hopes to have iMobot on the market by the end of the year.