A ‘mammal-inspired’ robot called DyRET (Dynamic Robot for Embodied Testing) was created by engineers at the University of Oslo in Norway. The robot uses algorithms in order to adapt to its environment, and while at first it struggles to even walk it becomes more proficient as time progresses.
“For robots to handle the numerous factors that can affect them in the real world, they must adapt to changes and unexpected events,” the team wrote, according to GE Reports. “Evolutionary robotics tries to solve some of these issues by automatically optimizing a robot for a specific environment.”
The robot’s walk is controlled through eight parameters, and monitors different aspects of its movement such as how long each step is and how high the robot should lift its leg.
“This robot is a first attempt at a complex robot with self-changing morphology in hardware, and will serve as a research platform,” said Nygaard, according to Digital Trends. “A huge part of evolutionary robotics research is today done in simulation, due to the ease and speed of implementation and testing. Real-world environments have a richness and natural noise that is impossible to replicate perfectly in simulation, and I believe the way forward for the field is to start moving more of the research effort into hardware experiments.”