Portuguese scientists are developing robots to help people with mobility problems.
The researchers in Guimarães are trying to create robots that can react to unexpected situations and adapt their movements accordingly.
The scientists want them to be able to make decisions for themselves.
One of the researchers at Minho University, Miguel Oliveira, outlined what they are trying to achieve: “The purpose of this experiment is to test our system of motion, to know how the senses would adapt to an irregular walking surface. It is what you do, for example, when you are skateboarding.”
To improve their navigation, robots must have their own form of senses, like touch and the ability to detect vibration.
Scientists then have to translate that into what is called the device’s adaptive and intelligent mobility.
Researcher Vitor Matos explained: “It has to do with the way a robot’s foot touches the ground, the position of the limbs, the force exerted by the muscles, information in the system of balance, whether it is leaning or falling down.”
It is hoped these new techniques could be used in future motorised prosthetics, but there is still a long way to go and many challenges the scientists have to overcome.
Professor Cristina Santos from the university’s department of electronics said: “If there’s a problem, if the robot stumbles, how can it react, how do the different motors react so that its movement is coordinated? If it is climbing, how can it generate the movement to walk properly, like we do? How can it climb stairs, avoid obstacles and how can it intuitively change its movement?”
The project is being developed by students and staff from the department of industrial electronics at the University of Minho who hope to have it completed by 2013.
Copyright © 2014 euronewsMore about:
- 1euronews live TV - News | euronews : the latest international news as video on demand
- 2Now is ‘right time’ for Catalonia independence vote, says Mas | euronews, world news
- 3Vatican rocked by another paedophilia scandal | euronews, world news
- 4Two container ships collide on Egypt’s Suez Canal | euronews, no comment
- 5British Muslims’ message to ISIL: Not in my name! | euronews, world news
- 6Sweden becomes first European nation to recognise Palestine | euronews, world news
- 7Algeria: ISIL offshoot releases video threatening French hostage Hervé Gourdel | euronews, world news
- 8International tv news | euronews: European and International tv news bulletin
- 9Revealed: Europe’s capital cities where it’s hardest to be a foreigner | euronews, world news
- 10European Union News | euronews: latest breaking news and headlines about European Union
- 11Emma Watson threatened with naked photos leak after UN equality speech | euronews, world news
- 12How nasheeds became the soundtrack of jihad | euronews, world news
- 13Iceland volcano ‘pollutes Paris’ | euronews, world news
- 14Ebola: Six new suspected cases in Spain | euronews, world news
- 15Learning through “serious games” | euronews, learning world
- 16euronews speaks to Ban Ki-moon ahead of key UN and climate change talks | euronews, the global conversation
- 17Mike Tyson: ‘You learn humbleness when you get older in life’ | euronews, the global conversation
- 18US delivers technical aid to Ukraine but warns over security | euronews, world news
- 19euronews apps : iPhone, iPad, Android, Windows Phone 8, Windows 8, Nokia S40, Nokia Asha, Smart TV and Google Glass
- 20Global warming to ‘cause 250,000 extra deaths a year’ | euronews, world news