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The Monospinner, developed at the Institute for Dynamic Systems and Control at ETH Zurich, is the mechanically simplest, controllable, flying machine in existence. It has only one moving part (the rotating propeller), but can still fully control its position in space. The vehicle features no additional actuators or aerodynamic surfaces.

Kickstart-programThe Kickstart Accelerator program in Switzerland is currently accepting applications from early-stage startups making “smart and connected machines”, namely robots.

by   -   April 1, 2016

The last place you might expect to find drones and rovers is checking up on a corn field, but they could soon join tractors and ploughs on a farmer’s list of must-have agricultural tools, thanks to their potential to reduce pesticide use and increase the amount of crops that can be grown.

roscon_hamburg_CropROSCon is an annual conference focused on ROS, the Robot Operating System. Every year, hundreds of ROS developers of all skill levels and backgrounds, from industry to academia, come together to teach, learn, and show off their latest projects. ROSCon 2015 was held in Hamburg, Germany.

Here is the next set of posts from the OSRF blog, along with videos.

by   -   March 11, 2016

cybathlonOn Saturday, 8 October 2016 ETH Zurich is organising the very first Cybathlon at the SWISS Arena in Kloten, Switzerland.  Individuals with physical disabilities will compete side by side in six demanding disciplines, using the latest assistive technologies, and now tickets are available to buy.

Source: ADRLabETH/youtube
Hardware experiments on motion planning for the the ballbot Rezero using direct transcription. Source: ADRLab ETH/youtube

When you walk across a room or down a path, your brain is making thousands of decisions on how best to move. For example, how best to use your weight, scanning for any obstacles or uneven surfaces, and how rigid (or soft) your limbs and joints should be. Teaching a robot to conduct the same decision-making process is ongoing in robotics, and a team from ADRL, ETH Zurich and NCCR Robotics is studying existing direct transcription methods for trajectory optimization applied to robot motion planning.

by   -   March 7, 2016
 Photo source: 2016 NYCDFF
Welby Altidor, Executive Creative Director of Creation, Cirque du Soleil (L) and Benjamin Dupont (R). Source: 2016 NYCDFF

SPARKED: A Live Interaction Between Humans and Quadcopters won the 2016 New York City Drone Film Festival (NYCDFF) Featuring Drones category.

NYCDFF is the world’s first event exclusively dedicated to celebrating the art of drone cinematography. The festival offers an international platform for filmmakers from every corner of the globe to exhibit their work in front of industry professionals and the drone cinema fan community. 

by   -   February 25, 2016
photo source: ETH Zurich, RSL
ANYmal walking. photo source: ETH Zurich, RSL

ANYmal is a quadrupedal robot designed for autonomous operation in difficult terrains. It is capable of running and climbing, and with its incorporated laser sensors and cameras, the robot can perceive its environment to continuously create maps and accurately localize.

by   -   February 22, 2016

Last week Raffaello D’Andrea, professor at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH Zurich) and founder of Verity Studios, demonstrated a whole series of novel flying machines live on stage at TED2016: From a novel Tail-Sitter (a small, fixed-wing aircraft that can optimally recover a stable flight position after a disturbance and smoothly transition from hover into forward flight and back), to the “Monospinner” (the world’s mechanically simplest flying machine, with only a single moving part), to the “Omnicopter” (the world’s first flying machine that can move into any direction independent of its orientation and its rotation), to a novel fully redundant quadrocopter (the world’s first, consisting of two separate two-propeller flying machines), to a synthetic swarm (33 flying machines swarming above the audience).

by   -   February 9, 2016

The ETH knee perturbator is a remotely actuated knee exoskeleton and is studying the impedance modulation in healthy subjects during various modes of gait.

The Flying Platform is a new flying machine developed at the Institute for Dynamic Systems and Control at ETH Zurich. Its purpose is to study the use of electric ducted fans as control and propulsion systems for flying machines in applications where size is limited and high static thrusts are required, for example in aerial vehicles capable of vertical take-off and landing (VTOL), hovercrafts or even actuated wingsuit flight. The video below shows how the thrust vectoring is used to stabilize the vehicle.

by   -   November 19, 2015
Credit:  ETH Zurich / Alessandro Della Bella
Credit: ETH Zurich / Alessandro Della Bella

In 21 countries across the globe, hundreds of people are preparing for Cybathlon 2016, where cutting edge robotic assistive technologies will help people with disabilities to compete in a series of races. This summer the Cybathlon practice session took place at the Swiss Arena in Kloten so that the teams could test out the courses. Watch the trailer for the rehearsal games!

by and   -   October 30, 2015

Robots teach each other new tricks; versatile construction bots; Leeds to employ robot utility inspectors and workers; Hollywood drone mishap; Robopocalypse Now! and more.

by   -   October 30, 2015

starleth_quadruped_robot_bioinspiredStarlETH is a multi-purpose legged transporter robot developed at ETH Zurich’s Autonomous Systems Lab. Combining versatility, speed, robustness, and efficiency, StarlETH walks, climbs, and runs over varied terrain.

In-situ fabcicator2
In-situ fabricator. Source: NCCR Digital Fabrication

Digital fabrication enables the seamless combination of digital design with physical construction processes. To fully exploit this emerging technology within architecture, robotic fabrication must be expanded in prefabrication, but also fully implemented directly on construction sites. Achieving in-situ fabrication using mobile construction robotics is the goal of several research projects within the National Centre for Competence in Research (NCCR) Digital Fabrication.

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Cognitive Robotics Under Uncertainty
November 26, 2019


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