NASA’s New Space Exploration Robot Moves Like a Snake

The robot goes by the name EELS

EELS robot

Tired: Robot dogs. Wired: Robot Snakes.

Take a look at the current state of robotics today and you’re likely to see an image that resembles a creature, at least in acronyms. Dog-like robots are available Speaking ability; Human robots Can perform complex turns that would put a parkour trainer to shame. But they’re not the only advanced forms of technology that take their cues from the animal kingdom. NASA is developing a robot with a snake-like design — and while it may not be doing triple axels anytime soon, its design could pay off in a big way when exploring space.

A recent Notice News from NASA shared that the robot in question is being put through its paces at the space agency’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The robot is called the Exobiology Extended Life Surveyor – or EELS for short. The goal behind EELS? Build a robot capable of exploring terrain that is difficult for vehicles with wheels, pavements, or legs to navigate—from caves and tunnels to far-off oceans. moons.

Matthew Robinson, project manager at EELS, spoke about the robot’s versatility. „It has the ability to go places other robots can’t,” Robinson said in a statement. „While some robots are better at a certain type of terrain or others, the idea of ​​EELS is the ability to do it all.”

Development of EELS began in 2019, and the team working on the 13-foot-long robot has been testing it in various environments. Ultimately, the team’s goal is to integrate EELS with other tools for data collection purposes. EELS is less clear when actually traveling in space; Space.com’s Article It says that robots may not be used until the 2050s. As for what developments EELS might spark, that remains to be seen.

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