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Boston Dynamics – The WildCat robot is the fastest free running quadruped robot in the World, running at 32 km/h. The previous record was 21 km/h, set in 1989 at MIT.
WildCat is powered by a methanol burning engine that drives a hydraulic actuation system (and makes a whale of a noise.) The robot uses a variety of gaits, including trotting, bounding, and galloping to maintain its balance while running and maneuvering over relatively flat terrain. The on-board computer uses dynamic control algorithms and a variety of sensors (IMU, ground contract, proprioception, visual odometry) to control and stabilize the running motion. It uses a set of laser range finders to accurately measure the robot’s height and attitude above the ground.
The control system that stabilizes WildCat was first developed on Cheetah, a laboratory prototype that ran 48 km/h, faster than Usain Bolt. (Cheetah ran indoors on a treadmill with no wind load, was constrained to move in a plane and was powered by a very large remote power supply.)
WildCat development was funded by DARPA’s Maximum Mobility and Manipulation program.
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, or even use Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for MakeCode, CircuitPython, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.