Design of an improved land/air miniature robot

Alex Kossett, Ruben D'Sa, Jesse Purvey, Nikolaos Papanikolopoulos

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

22 Scopus citations


Small ground robots remain limited in their locomotion capabilities, often prevented from accessing areas restricted by tall obstacles or rough terrain. This paper presents the improved design of a hybrid-locomotion robot made to address this issue. It uses wheels for ground travel and rotary-wing flight for scaling obstacles and flying over rough terrain. The robot's initial design suffered from a number of issues that prevented it from functioning fully, such as overheating motors, inadequate control electronics, and insufficient landing gear. Several improvements have been made to the robot's design to correct these problems. These obstacles, and the solutions implemented in the improved design, have enabled several design principles to be formulated for miniature hybrid-locomotion robots. It is found that hybrid-locomotion vehicles utilizing rotary-wing flight are most useful when the design is optimized for ground mode performance. Collapsibility is necessary in such vehicles to reduce the impact of the helicopter rotor on the size of the ground mode. Finally, since a large number of actions are necessary to propel and transform the robot, integrating multiple functions into each mechanism can reduce the mass of the robot.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2010 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, ICRA 2010
Number of pages6
StatePublished - 2010
Event2010 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, ICRA 2010 - Anchorage, AK, United States
Duration: May 3 2010May 7 2010

Publication series

NameProceedings - IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation
ISSN (Print)1050-4729


Other2010 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, ICRA 2010
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityAnchorage, AK


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