The World’s Smallest Chain Robot (+VIDEO)
Engineers from MIT have designed the “milli-motein”, which is the world’s smallest chain robot looking like a metal caterpillar. Neil Gershenfeld, Ara Knaian and Kenneth Cheung are sure that any three-dimensional shape can be made by folding a long string of identical subunits, thus the small motorized gadget can fold itself into almost any desirable shape. Its new “electro-permanent motor” uses a series of permanent magnets paired with electromagnets arranged in a circle; these magnets drive a steel ring placed around them and only use power when changing the position of the robot. The motors in the robot directly drive each axis without the need for gearing. Watch the video below to learn more about the innovative robotic technology.