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Oct 21, 2021

One giant leap for the mini cheetah

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

A new control system, demonstrated using MIT’s robotic mini cheetah, enables four-legged robots to jump across uneven terrain in real-time. A loping cheetah dashes across a rolling field, bounding over sudden gaps in the rugged terrain. The movement may look effortless, but getting a robot to move this way is an altogether different prospect.

In recent years, four-legged robots inspired by the movement of cheetahs and other animals have made great leaps forward, yet they still lag behind their mammalian counterparts when it comes to traveling across a landscape with rapid elevation changes.

“In those settings, you need to use vision in order to avoid failure. For example, stepping in a gap is difficult to avoid if you can’t see it. Although there are some existing methods for incorporating vision into legged locomotion, most of them aren’t really suitable for use with emerging agile robotic systems,” says Gabriel Margolis, a PhD student in the lab of Pulkit Agrawal, professor in the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) at MIT.

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