Introduction

Boston Dynamics' Atlas robot shows off parkour, agility skills in new video

  • Client

    Boston Dynamics

  • Services

    To navigate the multi-tiered obstacle course with ease.

  • Technologies

    Robotics

  • Dates

    12/10/2018

Description

In an unnerving move bringing us one step closer to Black Mirror's dystopian world, engineering and robotics design firm Boston Dynamics has introduced its Atlas robot to parkour.

 

Boston Dynamics calls the 175-centimetre (5ft 9in) robot weighing 75 kilograms "the world's most dynamic humanoid".

 

The Atlas robot has gone through progressive evolutions, from walking to running, to jumping and doing backflips, but as you can see in the footage, it is now fully poised to chase you as you run for your life.

Atlas tech specifications

  • On-board real-time control computer
  • Hydraulic pump and thermal management
  • Two arms, two legs, a torso and a head
  • 28 hydraulically actuated joints
  • Carnegie Robotics sensor head with LIDAR and stereo sensors
  • Two sets of hands, one provided by iRobot and one by Sandia National Labs

 

The humanoid robot managed to navigate the multi-tiered obstacle course with ease.

 

It shifted its weight to leap over a log and then in three fluid movements made its way up a three-tiered platform at speed.

 

The company said Atlas "uses the whole body including legs, arms and torso, to marshal the energy and strength for jumping over the log and leaping up the steps without breaking its pace".

 

The US-based firm said its mission was to "build the most advanced robots on Earth, with remarkable mobility, agility, dexterity and speed" — and has released videos in the past of their various other robot models showcasing new skills.

 

In December last year the company released footage of Atlas' ability to balance, jump, and even do a backflip.

 

Going even further back, Boston Dynamics showed off Sand Flea, a robot with four wheels that could jump to a height of 10 metres, and Big Dog, a four-legged robot similar to SpotMini that is built to travel across rugged terrain, including mud, snow and water — albeit not very gracefully.

 

They have also shown footage of their robots' capability to self-correct after receiving a knock, in a series of tests that look more like a journal of bullying.

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