Chinese and Australian scientists have jointly presented an interesting development in the field of robotics. The liquid robot they created can change its shape using the properties of the gallium metal contained in its device.
In the future, the unique plastic properties of the robot in the future may become indispensable in complex narrow spaces, which can only be penetrated with the help of fluidity and modification of the original shape.
One of the direct participants in the liquid robot 2018 project - Chinese professor Li Xiangpeng openly says that the development was inspired by the robot villain T-1000 from the second part of the famous "Terminator". According to him, after watching the blockbuster, his dream was to create a similar technology, but not for destruction, but for creation. Indeed, the presented prototype made of liquid metal is absolutely nothing like the cruel anti-hero of a science fiction film. Project representatives say they are still studying the technology in order to then present a fully-fledged example of a robot capable of changing shape.
In the meantime, the created robot from liquid metal has a relatively simple device. The whole design includes a couple of chips, a lithium battery, a plastic wheel, and a battery with a little gallium. This metal has an extremely low melting point and can change when exposed to stress. The movement of the robot is provided by the spinning wheel at the moment when the liquid metal changes its center of gravity when energized from the battery.
The project started six years ago. During that period, researchers became aware of the useful characteristics of liquid metal alloys, namely: high malleability, high electrical conductivity, controllable surface tension. According to scientists, flexible metal robotics in the future will be similar to living natural organisms.
The scope of application of such developments in the future is quite extensive, for example, they can be useful during rescue operations - a liquid robot can become an effective assistant in rescuing people from a disaster and destruction area. Such machines would theoretically be able to pass through narrow cracks and under locked doors. The technology can also be used for targeted drug delivery in the body, military espionage, etc.
The Topic of Article: Scientists have created a prototype of a robot from liquid metal, as in the iconic ”Terminator”.