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'Electric Sheep' Runs On Real Grass - EATR Robot

The EATR robot would be the perfect chassis upon which to build Philip K. Dick's electric sheep - and go further than even Dick imagined.

He ascended … to the covered pasture whereon his electric sheep "grazed." Whereon it, sophisticated piece of hardware that it was, chomped away in simulated contentment, bamboozling the other tenants of the building.

Of course, some of their animals undoubtedly consisted of electronic circuitry fakes, too (he had never nosed into the matter)…Nothing could be more impolite. To say "Is your sheep genuine" would be a breach of etiquette.
(From Philip K. Dick's Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?)

"Simulated contentment?" The Energetically Autonomous Tactical Robot looks for real biomass - like grass - and consumes it, extracting energy. Take a look at the EATR diagram below.


(Grazing robot uses biomass for power)

The system obtains its energy by foraging – engaging in biologically-inspired, organism-like, energy-harvesting behavior which is the equivalent of eating. It can find, ingest, and extract energy from biomass in the environment (and other organically-based energy sources), as well as use conventional and alternative fuels (such as gasoline, heavy fuel, kerosene, diesel, propane, coal, cooking oil, and solar) when suitable.

Via CNET and EATR Robot.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 7/14/2009)

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