JRM Vol.36 No.2 pp. 415-425
doi: 10.20965/jrm.2024.p0415


GREEMA: Proposal and Experimental Verification of Growing Robot by Eating Environmental Material for Landslide Disaster

Yusuke Tsunoda ORCID Icon, Yuya Sato, and Koichi Osuka ORCID Icon

Department of Mechanical Engineering, Osaka University
2-1 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871, Japan

May 3, 2023
November 28, 2023
April 20, 2024
mobile robot, growing robot, open design approach, implicit control, landslide dam

In areas inaccessible to humans, such as the lunar surface and landslide sites, there is a need for multiple autonomous mobile robot systems that can replace human workers. Robots are required to remove water and sediment from landslide sites such as river channel blockages as soon as possible. Conventionally, several construction machines are deployed at civil engineering sites. However, owing to the large size and weight of conventional construction equipment, it is difficult to move multiple units of construction equipment to a site, which results in significant transportation costs and time. To solve such problems, this study proposes GREEMA: growing robot by eating environmental material, which is lightweight and compact during transportation and functions by eating environmental materials once it arrives at the site. GREEMA actively takes in environmental materials, such as water and sediment, uses them as its structure, and removes them by moving itself. In this study, two types of GREEMAs were developed and experimentally verified. First, we developed a fin-type swimming robot that passively takes in water into its body using a water-absorbing polymer and forms a body to express its swimming function. Second, we constructed an arm-type robot that eats soil to increase the rigidity of its body. We discuss the results of these two experiments from the viewpoint of explicit-implicit control and describe the design theory of GREEMA.

Robot growing by eating water/soil

Robot growing by eating water/soil

Cite this article as:
Y. Tsunoda, Y. Sato, and K. Osuka, “GREEMA: Proposal and Experimental Verification of Growing Robot by Eating Environmental Material for Landslide Disaster,” J. Robot. Mechatron., Vol.36 No.2, pp. 415-425, 2024.
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Last updated on May. 19, 2024