The other is made of metal, the size of the toy caniches, with four feet pointed ended little balls. They must learn their way to this little walk through a traitor rocky terrain broken. University of Southern California usually Stefan Schaal, the extension of the $ 1.5 million DARPA contract for the training to do so.
Schaal, a professor at the USC Viterbi School technical department of Computer Science, has been working on the problem more than a year ago.
Four legs and the robot were six years to achieve, he noted, but only on smooth surfaces where the wheels are moving more efficiently.
“What you really want robots for the feet, the negotiations on a difficult terrain,” he says. “This project is to push the envelope”.
Boston Dynamics built “robot with a computer chip on the board sensors.
The robot is constantly on the position of the middle of the gravity.The strategy for the way it into a document Schaal, in the 2007 IEEE International Conference of Robotics and Automation, were “fundamental right to go generator with the selection of Each plant foot as the gravitational center… follows a trajectory stable. “
To achieve this, the robot calculates where and how it should be “based on the current position, velocity and acceleration” his legs. If neglected, print, the dog learns from mistakes and seek another way the next time.
After 15 months of trials, refers organs mechanical dog with a speed of about one month, but everyone, the economy experiences on the electronic Schaal-dogs can now move, but not very fast: Travels on 1, 6 centimeters per second, a little faster as the old, T. 1.2 cm / s of the old March Sojourner robot.
The objective in the next phase of the study is the tripling twice the speed and difficulty of the terrain, the dogs not only by the rocks, but the rise of rocky soil with a steep.
If this can be achieved, “he says, the programming is moving ever more mechanical dogs.
Schaal is in competition with five other laboratories in universities and R & D in the country. The first part of the study, which studied Schaal Dipl Dimitris Pongas (CS Ph.D. 07) made important contributions.
How is the bark? “As soon as they can run, I will be for them to bark,” says Schaal.