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Now, corkscrew-drive robot to easily roam rough terrain.

Washington, May 29 (ANI): An engineer in Cumberland, Wisconsin has successfully built an omni directional, all-terrain rover with corkscrew "wheels."

Tim Lexen's corkscrew-drive robot could find application in roaming the Martian landscape or aid soldiers on earthly battlefield.

The underbelly of his prototype includes a flat triangular compartment made from PVC, that houses three electric servomotors, battery packs and electronics.

These independently operate three 8-inch stainless steel helical coils, which have a low-friction outer coating to keep the device from getting stuck in rough terrain.

The corkscrew motion of the coils allows them to push or pull against rugged surfaces, making the robot ideal for roving on textured surfaces such as dirt, sand or gravel.

"While significant progress has been made in the development of sensor and control technology, one of the major challenges is that of mobility-that is, physically traversing obstacles, soft and rocky soil and other hazards in complex, unstructured and high-risk environments," Lexen told the Discovery News.

"Most current rover design solutions are improvements over the basic four-wheel or tracked vehicle designs. But these still can be easily foiled in the rover mission," he added.

The obstacles are taken care of by the prototype's Y-shaped layout and low-friction, rounded edges of the coils. These give the device the ability to move in any direction. (ANI)

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Publication:Asian News International
Date:May 29, 2011
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