Tal Kislassi and David Zarrouk from Ben Gurion University in Israel Have released details of a unique robot that can climb up its own tracks. The minimalist robot tank is capable of raising its front when required to gain elevation. The Reconfigurable Continuous Track Robot RCTR Is capable of changing its entire body shape on a link by link basis using just one extra actuator. Watch the demonstration video below to learn more about the unique mechanism and how it can be used to enable the robot to climb.
“RCTR takes this idea and flips it around, so that instead of an actuator moving along a bunch of flexible links, you have a bunch of flexible links (the track) moving across an actuator. Each link in the track has a locking pin, and depending on what the actuator is set to when that link moves across it, the locking pin can be engaged such that the following link gets fixed at a relative angle of either zero degrees or 20 degrees. It’s this ability to lock the links of the track—turning the robot from flexible to stiff—that allows RCTR to rear up to pass over an obstacle, and do the other stuff that you can see in the video. And to keep the robot from fighting against its own tracks, the rear of the robot has a passive system that disengages the locking pins on every link to reset the flexibility of the track as it passes over the top. “
For more details on the unique robot and its unique robot tracks that can be used to allow the robot to gain elevation, jump over to the IEEE Spectrum website.