Monday, October 26, 2009
Boston Dynamics, best known for the quadruped robots BigDog and Little Dog, have now developed a dynamically balancing bipedal robot that uses a toe-to-heel walking method very similar to a human. The robot, called PETMAN, can be seen in the YouTube video above going through tests on a treadmill. PETMAN is an anthropomorphic robot for testing chemical protection clothing used by the US Army. Unlike previous suit testers, which had to be supported mechanically and had a limited repertoire of motion, PETMAN will balance itself and move freely; walking, crawling and doing a variety of suit-stressing calisthenics during exposure to chemical warfare agents. PETMAN will also simulate human physiology within the protective suit by controlling temperature, humidity and sweating when necessary, all to provide realistic test conditions.