(ORDO NEWS) — Scientists at Cornell University have developed a deformable rubber pump that mimics the action of the heart and can provide soft robots with a circulatory system.
In the future, the development can be applied not only to robots, but also to maintain blood circulation in the treatment of cardiovascular diseases.
The Tin Woodman had no heart. Today’s soft robots also have “hearts” that are not all right. Powered pumps that function as their “hearts” are so rigid and bulky that they have to be taken out of the “body” of the robot, which is extremely inconvenient.
Cornell University researchers have proposed a mechanism that is driven by hydrodynamic and magnetic forces.
It is powerful and compact enough to provide the circulatory system of soft robots. Congratulations to the Tin Woodman. Now he will be fine.
Affairs of the Heart
Like humans and animals, soft robots need a circulatory system to store energy and power their limbs while performing complex tasks.
The new elastomeric pump consists of a soft silicone tube with coils of wire (solenoids) around its outer surface. The gaps between the coils allow the tube to bend and stretch.
Inside the tube is a magnet with a solid core, surrounded by a magnetorheological fluid – this fluid solidifies under the influence of a magnetic field, which holds the core in the center and creates the necessary seal.
Depending on which direction the magnetic field is applied, the core magnet can be moved back and forth like a floating piston to push liquids such as water and low viscosity emulsion.
The researchers conducted an experiment to demonstrate that the system could maintain a constant performance under large strains.
The scientists tracked various performance parameters so that the “heart” could be adapted for different types of robots in the future. And perhaps not only robots, but also for humans.
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