Biohybrid Research to Strengthen Muscle-Bound Robots and Drones

Researchers with the U.S. Army Research Laboratory  are collaborating with researchers at Duke University and the University of North Carolina on high-risk studies in biohybrid robotics. They say that robotic systems packed with muscle tissue can produce never-seen-before agility and versatility. Biohybrid robotics integrates living organisms to mechanical systems to improve performance. The first applications for biohybrid robotics the team expects to focus on are legged platforms and flapping-wing drones. Duke University will direct computational research and the University of North Carolina will manage experiments validating the predictions from the computational efforts. Army researchers will work on the theoretical mesomechanics that can be tested with the data collected from both the computational and experimental efforts. Their work will be supplemented by a Duke University team working on macroscopic performance characteristics of muscle, tendon, and ligaments in jumping creatures for use in legged robots.