The robot-insect jumping on the water

A team of researchers invented a robot capable of jumping on the water surface such as insects skaters. Looking at the surface of a pond or the bank of a river is not hard to discover small insects like mosquitoes jumping and moving anxiously in all directions. They are called insects skaters for their skill to shift on the surface of the water by placing only the tarsus of medium and rear paws without sink and with no even wet the other body parts. Skill mechanically replicated in a laboratory of Seoul National University.

The robot-insect jumping on the water

The group of South Korean researchers involved in the development has created what is called a strider robot (named after the insect in English) starting from the study of the dynamics that allow the small animal to exert enough force on the liquid to rise in height. The result is interesting enough to be mentioned in the newest issue of the journal Science. A small work of art of engineering robotics with a body from a width of 2 cm and a weight of 68 milligrams his capability to jump over the water  is immortalized in the video stream below slowed to 0,005x so you can better appreciate the movement.

The use of hydrophobic material thus able to repel liquids is the secret of the small automaton. At the middle is a mechanism to catapult reverse inspired by the paw of a flea, which causes the movement of the four limbs bent at the ends just like in Gerridae. This provides a progressive thrust equal to 140 mN / m slightly less than 144 mN / m that they would sink allowing the entire unit to move reaches a speed equal to 1.6 m / s and a maximum height of 142 mm. The purpose of the project is not to realize in the future a larger version of the robot strider but to use it to better understand the behavior of real insects.