Chinese researchers invent a flying robot

A team of researchers at the Shenyang Institute of Automation (SIA) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences have designed a flying robot.

According to reports, the robot is known for its enhanced flexibility and for its strong mission adaptability.

The flying robot was intended for maintenance of skyscrapers. Through the latest creation, the team highlighted the inefficiency and the costly expenses required for the labor force responsible for the inspection of high-rise buildings.

The new robot on the other hand represents enhanced efficiency and safety. It is equipped with a single degree of freedom manipulator cube-frame, in addition to an effector and a hex-rotor UAV system. Furthermore, as opposed to other wall-climbing robots, the flying robot can avoid obstacles and also jump over other hindrances on wall surfaces. Researchers also allege, the flying robot can perform interactive operations while in flight. In addition, the innovative design of the robot can be controlled without any force sensors.

According to MENG Xiangdong, flying robots are generally sensitive to external force, as a result of which controlling the force is regarded as one of the most difficult problems. Owning to this characteristic, the team designed a flying robot featuring a closed loop control which also worked as a regular spring system. The elastic coefficient could therefore be changed by altering the control parameters.

“It means that we can take the robot as a spring system so that the contact process can be safe enough,” commented MENG.

The team carried out several experiments to test the system. One of such experiments included fixing a light switch to a wall, and having the robot press the switch in order to turn on and off the light. The robot could perform this action with the help of a precise force control. The robot could also move along a glass wall by exerting a fixed pressure. The robot also wrote SIA, Shenyang Institute of Automation by using a pen attached to the end of the aerial manipulator.

The team believes this invention could further be used for maintenance of large infrastructure and for other special applications such as scientific sampling.