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UAVs to Get Robot Arms & Hands
9/24/2012

To determine how adding limbs to a UAV will affect its performance during flight, researchers will retrofit an adjustable gantry system with robotic arms and hands.   (Source: Drexel University)
To determine how adding limbs to a UAV will affect its performance during flight, researchers will retrofit an adjustable gantry system with robotic arms and hands.
(Source: Drexel University)

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Beth Stackpole
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From lab to reality?
Beth Stackpole   9/24/2012 7:42:42 AM
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Once again, I can't help but be amazed by the breadth of really out-there robotics technology percolating in labs. This development could have huge benefits for first responder applications--that's for sure. Any sense of how much of this robotics technology being explored via grants and other reseaerch projects ever sees the light of day?

naperlou
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long arm of the law?
naperlou   9/24/2012 10:09:23 AM
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Wow, with this technology they won't even have to send out a deputy to arrest you.  An UAV will just swoop down and pick you up.  Watch the sky! 

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: long arm of the law?
Ann R. Thryft   9/24/2012 1:57:12 PM
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Thanks, Lou, that gave me a laugh. The Los Angeles police department is well known for its helicopter cops. I wonder if they'll be interested?

Rob Spiegel
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Re: long arm of the law?
Rob Spiegel   9/24/2012 9:36:15 PM
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Nice story, Ann. I find the choice to use arms and legs interesting. The wheel is so functional. But perhaps it's not functional in all environments. 

JimT@Future-Product-Innovations
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Clean sheet of Paper
JimT@Future-Product-Innovations   9/25/2012 12:53:33 PM
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Very STAR-WARS. I immediately think of the Imperial-Walkers.  (Remember the Jedi  tripped-them-up by flying  tow-cables around their massive legs?)  But on a more realistic note, one of my foundations is on Realistic Enablement.  Lots of people dream, but the true innovator finds a way to turn dreams into reality.  Looking at the graphic in the article shows the retrofit concept for limbs on a UAV solicits more problems than solutions; "flight-worthiness" being an obvious issue, considering lift and drag.

But the dream of the utility is valid:  first responders to disasters; flying to the highest point of a suspension bridge and welding a repair; (etc.) makes me think the embodiment  such as "Fly, then Land, then Work" might more look like an insect than todays UAV.  I'm thinking, hover-capability and suction cups (or similar), to "stick-the-landing" so to speak.  Gosh, its fun to have a clean sheet of paper, isn't it-?

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Clean sheet of Paper
Ann R. Thryft   9/25/2012 1:04:34 PM
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Jim, figuring out how not to destabilize a flying robot by giving it usable arms and hands is exactly what the team says it will study first. What intrigued me was the fact that this obvious point hadn't been studied before. Maybe that's because it didn't seem possible to overcome.

JimT@Future-Product-Innovations
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Re: Clean sheet of Paper
JimT@Future-Product-Innovations   9/25/2012 1:19:55 PM
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Thanks, Ann --- going back and re-reading your second paragraph, now highlights your statement; ",,,to examine the torques and reaction forces that are associated with applying robotic arms ,,,," which I guess I gleaned-over the first time thru.  Thanks for keeping me straight !

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Clean sheet of Paper
Ann R. Thryft   9/25/2012 1:28:27 PM
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I don't blame you for missing that. The fact that this had not been studied before is one of the things that intrigued me about the research. I'm always fascinated by thinkers and researchers who look beyond the current paradigms.

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