Introduction to Robotics at MIT
Massachusetts Institute of Technology engineers have created unique robots that are capable of erecting structures from woven fiberglass and will be able to replace builders in the future..
Bots, like a silkworm, use a single thread that spins around themselves to form custom fiberglass structures. Each device is slightly larger than a typical 1 liter bottle covered with silicone with a rotating handle on top. To build the segment, the robot’s handle wraps the body with resin-coated fiberglass thread. Further, under the influence of ultraviolet light, the resin hardens and glues the threads together. After each segment (9 cm), he pushes himself up and starts a new cycle..
Unlike other robots, the MIT development creates its own building material, and does not use ready-made ones. The device can control the slope of each new segment, which allows the erection of curved pipe-like structures. Such assistants can be used in the construction of buildings, bridges under water or in dangerous places, desert or other planets. Machines can also be combined with other types of construction robots to create more complex multiphase structures..
Existing models are computer controlled, but future versions will be equipped with cameras, lasers and other sensors to coordinate and respond to obstacles. The developers put into operation 16 robots, which erected pipes about 4 meters high. This fiberglass bouquet has successfully withstood the winter and fall in Massachusetts.
80 Acres Farms also decided to fully automate their operations and began construction of the first fully automated farm. in Hamilton.
text: Ivan Malichenko, photo: M. Kayser Et Al / Science Robotics