Miniscule robotic drones might be the future, but they’ve been tricky to get off the ground. Until now, any wing-flapping insect robot had to have a power source, making it too heavy to lift off with its tiny wings. Now, however, researchers at the University of Washington have found a way to transmit power to a flying robotic insect (lovingly dubbed RoboFly) via laser, obviating the need for a separate power supply.
The team is set to present its findings in a paper at the International Conference on Robotics and Automation in Brisbane, Australia on May 23rd. “Before now, the concept of wireless insect-sized flying robots was science fiction, said co-author and assistant professor Sawyer Fuller in a statement. “Would we ever be able to make them work without needing a wire? Our new wireless RoboFly shows they’re much closer to real life.”
Make a robot friend with Adafruit’s CRICKIT – A Creative Robotics & Interactive Construction Kit. It’s an add-on to our popular Circuit Playground Express, FEATHER and other platforms to make and program robots with CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. Start controlling motors, servos, solenoids. You also get signal pins, capacitive touch sensors, a NeoPixel driver and amplified speaker output. It complements & extends your boards so you can still use all the goodies on the microcontroller, now you have a robotics playground as well.