Raytheon Sarcos Exoskeletonized Ditch Witch

Raytheon-Sarcos engineers have obviously been enjoying themselves lately. Take a look at this modified Ditch Witch that now serves as an elaborate Synchronous Reduplicating Pantograph.


(Raytheon Sarcos Exoskeletonized Ditch Witch)

As Vice President of Operations Fraser Smith describes, "every way you move, your three degrees of freedom in your wrist, the one in your elbow and the three in your shoulder --the slave arms can move the same way you do."

The robot translates movements with what is called "force reflection." In the hands of the machine is incredible strength and agility, depending on what is needed to fulfill the task at hand.

"Anything that slave encounters in terms of force is also fed back to the operator so he can actually feel what's happening in the workspace," Fraser Smith, Vice President of Operations at Raytheon, told KSL Utah. "With added strength, the operator doesn't need two or three guys trying to muscle something around. This thing just picks it up and dexterously positions the material."

Robert Heinlein was the first person to describe the idea of teleoperated robotic devices in his 1942 story Waldo.

Waldo put his arms into the primary pair before him; all three pairs, including the secondary pair before the machine, came to life. Waldo flexed and extended his fingers gently; the two pairs of waldoes in the screen followed in exact, simultaneous parallelism.
(Read more about Heinlein's waldo)

Fans of Robot Jox, a 1990 movie, may find this idea familiar. Watch in amazement as enormous stop-action animated robots duke it out for giant robot supremacy!


(Robot Jox fight it out! [Starts around 2:00])

I can't resist these amazing amplifiers of human effort; be sure to read more about the Tmsuk T52 Enryu Support Dragon Hyper Rescue Robot, which uses similar principles.

Via KSL; thanks to Vududadi for pointing this story out.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 10/13/2011)

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