US Unveils Morphobot (M4), a Transformer Robot Capable of Driving, Flying, and even ‘Walking’

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The California Institute of Technology has introduced the Multi-Modal Mobility Morphobot (M4), a transformer robot as compact as a radio-controlled model, capable of changing its shape and method of transportation based on the surrounding environment. The robot can drive, fly, or ‘walk’ as required by the situation.

Image Source: Nature

The M4 robot is assembled from electronic components, engines, and a small computer that makes decisions on what form M4 should take at any given moment. The technical team has equipped the robot with wheels, which can transform into quadcopter-like rotors in mere seconds.

According to a publication in Nature, the robot can stand on two wheels for ‘walking’, while the other two serve as rotors, keeping the structure in a vertical position. For instance, it can get a better view of what lies ahead or navigate challenging terrain where a four-wheeled traversal would be problematic.

It is reported that the development of the robot was inspired by examples from the animal world, like meerkats and walruses. As mentioned in the publication, the model is built on the Jetson Nano platform – an accessible miniature version of the NVIDIA computer designed for robotics.

M4 can execute ‘eight different types of movements.’ According to a press release from the California Institute of Technology, the AI system allows it to make autonomous decisions based on the surrounding conditions. The developers suggest that, in the future, the robot could be used for tasks such as transporting wounded individuals to hospitals or exploring other planets.

Author Profile

Vasyl Kolomiiets
Vasyl Kolomiiets
I'm Vasyl Kolomiiets, a seasoned tech journalist regularly contributing to global publications. Having a profound background in information technologies, I seamlessly blended my technical expertise with my passion for writing, venturing into technology journalism. I've covered a wide range of topics including cutting-edge developments and their impacts on society, contributing to leading tech platforms.

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