Robots Built for Research
From time to time Matthew is asked to help with a research project being conducted by one of the scientists in the museum. Below are just a few of the projects he's worked on. Others include 3D printing and computer programs.
DenDrone, a Subterranean Sample Return Robot
Currently under construction, the DenDrone is a unique, remote controlled subterranean robot. It's purpose is to explore fox dens with the ability to take photos, videos, and extract physical samples.
Robo Rabbit 9000
Robo Rabbit 9000 began as a simple fake rabbit with a battery and motor attached that researchers were using as bait with a camera trap. Matthew tore it apart and rebuilt it into a smart robot that can last a whole week on a charge. He accomplished this by adding a microcontroller with a custom algorithm programmed into it that makes it move in a semi random, jerky fashion to save battery life and appear more realistic to potential prey.
RoPo the Robo Pony
RoPo (twitter: @mnsRoPo) is a large child’s toy horse that Matthew modified to behave more like a fawn. Now it is used to attract predators that are in turn photographed by a camera trap.