Disney Creates “VertiGo”, A Wall – Climbing Robot

The VertiGo is a a car – shaped robot created in collaboration between disney research Zurich and ETH. This robot can drive, fly and ride up walls with the aid of propellers and wheels. The robot has two tiltable propellers that provide thrust unto the walls and each propeller can be adjusted two degrees to the direction of the thrust.  This robot can actually move anywhere. All its motion comes from the propellers and its wheels are actually unpowered.

How it works

The great thing about VertiGo is that it adjusts its propellers automatically in response to changes in the surrounding surfaces therefore even when it encounters a wall barrier it adjusts itself in order to climb it using its propellers, the propellers are controlled by the rotary motors which are also known as servomotors, this helps to deliver precise control and also allows both frames to move independently.

By transitioning from the ground to a wall and back again, VertiGo extends the ability of robots to travel through urban and indoor environments. The robot is able to move on a wall quickly and with agility.
Paul Beardsley

“The choice of two propellers rather than one enables a floor-to-wall transition,” Beardsley said. “Thrust is applied both towards the wall using the rear propeller, and in an upward direction using the front propeller, resulting in a flip onto the wall.

All the forward movements are provided by the propellers, therefore none of the wheels are motorised, at all times they remain on the surface while one pair of the wheel is steerable, this enables the human to control it’s path remotely.

What’s it’s made of

Materials used in building the VertiGo robot are light, for a robot that climbs walls it needs to be as light as possible, besides.. spiderman was. The central baseplate is made using carbon fibre, the wheels and suspension system are created using 3D printed parts used with carbon. It also features about 8 motors which are individually controlled, the baseplate carries all the electronics, wires and an onboard computer. A six axis inertial measurement unit (IMU) measures and records data relating to the forces which acts upon the vehicle while its two infrared distance Sensors helps to estimate the robots orientation in space.

The computer collects this information and uses it to get the best position for all motors so the user can control the vehicle appropriately.

Why will I need a robot like this? Zurich is yet to give us the specific function/uses of this robot but personally, I would use it to get myself to the 8th floor without using the lift or stairs…lol.



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