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MM: 1-Legged Robot Named SALTO; Driverless Tractor Trailers

In this Manufacturing Minute episode, a tiny one-legged robot and cabin-less tractor trailers.

A Tiny One-Legged Robot Named SALTO

Roboticists at UC Berkeley recently unveiled a new bot that, although incredibly small, is already breaking records in the field.  

Weighing in at a mere 3.5 ounces with a height of 10.2 inches, this robot was designed to help researchers measure vertical agility, something that will specifically help scientists measure and rank jumping agility in animals.

Dubbed SALTO, this bot can leap into the air, spring off of walls and then perform multiple vertical jumps in the row. Already, SALTO has a vertical jumping agility of 1.75 meters per second, which is not only higher than that of a bullfrog but also the highest robotic vertical jumping agility ever recorded. 

And while SALTO was designed with a different purpose, researchers hope that the robot and other vertically agile robots can also be used to assist in search and rescue missions.

SO, WHAT DO YOU THINK? 

What do you think of this one-legged jumping robot? Could you imagine a SALTO-like robot jumping around rubble with rescue crews? Tweet me your thoughts @MnetNews or leave your thoughts in the comments below.

Driverless Tractor Trailers

As we head into our driverless future, one industry that most experts expect to forge ahead first into this technology is long-haul trucking. In an effort to make that a reality, Swedish company Einride has unveiled a prototype of its all-electric T-pod—which lacks a cabin—so there is no windshield, steering wheel or pedals. 

At only 23 feet long, the T-pod will weigh 20 tons with a full load, making it comparable to a Class 8 truck. The company envisions the truck to be controlled remotely by a human operator or autonomously. 

Einride hopes to deliver a complete transportation system between the cities of Gothenburg and Helsingborg by 2020 that will include 200 T-pods and charging stations on the route that will have a capacity of up to 2 million pallets per year. 

SO, WHAT DO YOU THINK? 

Do you think commercial long-haul trucking will be the tipping point for autonomous vehicles? How would such a system deal with the actually delivery of goods? Tell us what you think by leaving your comments below. 

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