Plif Piezo Light Intelligent Flea
Piezo Light Intelligent Flea
PLIF are walking three legs microrobots; two legs are moved by means of piezo ceramics bimorph actuators, while the third is only passive. These robots are very small (2cm X 2cm) and very light (few grams) but at the same time relatively fast (20 cm/s) with the capability to move with very small steps (few microns). Applications of such a kind of microrobots can be found in micromachining, inspection of small environments, micro-surgery, study of cooperating systems etc.. Three different version of these robots have been built and an automatic learning soft computing algorithm has been implemented to allow the microrobots to act as a prey or a predator. The main peculiarity of the PLIF robots is that the single steps are very short in lenght (few microns) but the legs move at high frequency (800Hz) so that a considerable speed can be reached. The main drawback is that the amplitude and direction of movement is very uncertain strongly depending on the type and roughness of the surface. To solve such a problem the microrobot trajectory must be controlled in a closed loop way. In particular to measure the position of the system an infrared sensor has been adopted.
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