Recently, researchers from Purdue University have engineered flying robots that behave like hummingbirds. They trained machine-learning algorithms depending on different techniques that the birds use every day. Researchers have combined artificial intelligence with flexible wings flapping allowing robots to learn new tricks themselves. Currently, robots cannot see but they are capable to sense by touching surface. Researchers will be tracking each touch that will be sent by the robot through electrical current.
Hummingbirds Robots Capable Of Finding Victims in Times of Calamities
Researchers will be capable to create a map without even looking its surrounding. This robot will be beneficial in times of natural calamities and disasters to find victims even in dark places. Associate professor Xinyan Deng is sure that this robot will be of greater use after it is capable to see.
As compared to drones, the hummingbird is more effective to use as it does not use conventional aerodynamics. Drones are incapable of generating enough lift to support their weight, which is not the case with hummingbirds. Moreover, hummingbirds have high angles of attack and high lift, awhich makes them capable of flying and scale down flapping of wing in robots.
From past several years, researchers have been attempting to decode hummingbird’s flight. This will help them in developing robots that can fly in areas where large aircraft cannot enter. But during this research, Deng’s team tracked details of hummingbirds such as the way it makes the rapid 180⁰ turn. They have translated it into computer algorithms that will help robots to learn when hooked up to simulation.
Moreover, researchers built a hummingbird robot of about 12 grams, which is the average size of an adult hummingbird. Thus, by designing a robot with a higher lift gives researchers a larger scope to wiggle. It also helps in adding sensing technology such as GPS or camera and battery. At present, the robot needs to be tethered to an energy source while it flies, but it doesn’t last long according to researchers.