Tweaking the structure of graphene so that it matches patterns found in the eyes of moths could one day give us “smart wallpaper,” among a host of other useful technologies.
Researchers from South Korea have created a robotic insect that’s capable of jumping and landing on an aquatic surface, a unique mode of transportation found only in specialized animals.
Ah, spring has sprung. The weather’s warm, the trees are starting to bud, and robots are frolicking about — including ATRIAS, a two-legged bot developed by researchers at Oregon State University.
Since 2007, researchers at the Maryland Robotics Center have been steadily upgrading Robo Raven, a super-realistic robotic bird that’s so lifelike it even fools the real thing. Its developers recently unveiled two new versions, including one that can take off by itself.
Researchers led by Stanford engineer Elliot Hawkes have created a pair of gecko-inspired gloves that enable users up to 200 pounds to scale smooth, vertical panes of glass. As one biomechanical engineer put it: "This is a really big deal."
Classic robots are absolutely weird, but there can be something unnerving about seeing dogs, snakes, bees, fish, and birds in robotic form. From uncanny headless creatures to mechanical snakes that can squeeze their way up a person's leg, here are the robotic critters we can't stop staring at.
If you described a shark as a toothy torpedo covered in sandpaper, you wouldn't be too far off the mark. It's that rough sandpapery skin that gives sharks their highly efficient swimming abilities, and scientists finally understand why.
The incredible properties of hagfish slime have fascinated scientists for decades, but researchers are only just beginning to make sense of this mucilaginous secretion. In doing so, they hope to create superfibers that could one day be used in everything from bullet-proof vests to artificial tendons.
Designed by German engineering firm Festo, these claw-tipped, artificially intelligent arms were designed to mimic the utility and movement of an elephant's trunk – but the resemblance to Dock Ock's writhing limbs is just uncanny.
Engineers often take inspiration from animal designs because they're more efficient than machines are. In the case of owl wings, nature has a major advantage over human engineering: owl wings are uncannily quiet. Now, researchers are considering outfitting wind turbines with an upscaled equivalent – if they can figure…
We love all this creepy/cute furniture inspired by animals and bugs. Some of it gets a little macabre, too.
Everyone, say hello to RoboBee. RoboBee is inspired by the biology of a fly – otherwise, it's exactly what it sounds like. And it is amazing.
Spiny headed worms are a clingy lot. They're intestinal parasites with long, cactus-like heads that are perfect for penetrating, and then grabbing hold of, the insides of their host's digestive organs. Now, bioengineers have co-opted these hanger-ons' latching mechanisms for something therapeutic: skin grafts.
Unsatisfied with the crawling, writhing, coiling and climbing abilities of their existing hoard of robotic snakes, members of Carnegie Mellon University's Biorobotics Laboratory have gone and given their mechanical serpent a brand new talent: the ability to wrap itself in a stranglehold around pretty much anything…
Now that BigDog can throw concrete slabs like it's nobody's business, it would be a mistake to assume that the humble quadrotor isn't going through a similar evolution in form and function. Watch as this avian-inspired micro UAV uses its talons to snatch objects like an eagle.
Our technologies are becoming more biological with each passing year. And here's the latest breakthrough: Caltech engineers have developed an integrated computer chip that can learn to heal its own injuries.
When the pending robopocalypse strikes, you may be tempted to seek refuge in the water. Don't do it — and watch this video to see why. It's the HiBot ACM-R5 robotic snake, a twirling and swirling amphibious machine developed by Japanese researchers. And what's just as remarkable (or is that horrifying?) is that it…
You remember Cheetah, don't you? Back in March, DARPA released video of the robotic quadruped galloping at speeds of up to 18 miles per hour. At the time, 18 mph was a new record, outstripping the previous one by just shy of five miles per hour.
People who go on social networking sites are often compared to ant colonies — but it may be truer than anyone realizes. A new study from the University of Madrid suggests that the behavior of real-life ants could inspire developers to improve the way these sites function. By constructing an algorithm modeled off the…