Search-and-rescue version of ‘Salto’ could parkour through disaster scene rubble
Stephen McNally and Roxanne Makasdjian/UC Berkeley
Meet the robot that can do parkour.
Salto, a lightweight bot that stands on one skinny leg like a flamingo, can leap from floor to wall, then off again — like parkour athletes bouncing between buildings, researchers from the University of California, Berkeley report December 6 in Science Robotics.
Salto’s not the highest jumping robot out there, but it’s got something others lack: speed. The new bot can spring a meter off the ground in just 0.58 seconds — about what a bullfrog can do, study coauthor Duncan Haldane said in a news conference December 5.
The robot’s mix of air and speed could one day aid search-and-rescue teams, he said. Ideally, a rescue robot would be able to move quickly and nimbly over rubble (SN: 12/13/14, p. 16). To do