German engineers at Festo have developed a servo motor-driven kangaroo that is able to do something important. Sure, it hops, and it’s impressive that it can do so in response to gestures from 50 feet away, but the coolest thing the bionic kangaroo can do is something that Festo hopes will make a big difference in industrial energy efficiency.
When natural kangaroos hop, they are able to convert force from their landing into energy for the next jump.
It’s not just kangaroos that do this, though they are among the best at it. Ballet dancers’ amazing jumps use the same principle.
Now, with a collection of sensors, electric servo drives (the kind we work with), and pneumatic pumps, Festo’s bionic kangaroo has demonstrated that a machine can also “recycle” energy in this extremely efficient way.
Festo likes the idea of using the superior systems that have developed through evolution to inspire superior technology.
[…] bionic kangaroo that copies kangaroos to figure out how to use less energy to move machinery is only one of the […]