An Artist Created a Robot Caterpillar That Can Climb up Piles of Wood
A kinetic artist named Reuben Margolin created a robotic caterpillar that is able to climb piles of wood. Margolin used micro-controllers to build it and it allows the robot to imitate the way real caterpillars move. The micro-controller inside the robot has a file that contains a quarter of a million angles which allows it to climb the wood.
About the choice of the woodpile, Reuben said, “The woodpile is not as random as it looks, but follows a predetermined polynomial spline within certain bounds of curvature. It is made of scrap wood and took about a week to make.
But the crux of the work was a gloriously fun math problem. Solving caterpillar motion over arbitrary curved surfaces is the toughest, and most rewarding, math that I’ve gotten into yet.”