Soft Robotics’ Grippers Design Inspired by Marine Creatures the Octopus and Starfish

Published by , April 3, 2017 3:59 am

(TechCrunch) Soft Robotics’ soft grippers are already being used by manufacturers and retailers to pick and pack everything from chocolates to injection-molded parts to uncooked pizza dough. The grippers don’t look like a human hand. Instead, they are comprised of a cartoonish quartet of rubbery, bright blue fingers that snap onto their target like an octopus clutching its prey.
The name of the company is a nod to both the soft material used to make its grippers and a sub-category in the larger field of robotics. The inspiration for the company is attributed to  George Whitesides who found his design inspiration from ocean starfish. He write earlier “We are interested in a unique class of robots. That is, soft robots fabricated in materials […] that do not use a rigid skeleton to provide mechanical strength. The objective of this work is to demonstrate a soft robot that requires only simple design and control to generate mobility.”

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