Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Researchers Develop World's First Flying Microrobot For Microscale Applications

Date:
April 14, 2009
Source:
University of Waterloo
Summary:
A Canadian engineering research team has developed the world's first flying microrobot capable of manipulating objects for microscale applications. The microrobot discovery provides researchers with more control over the microscale environment, allowing them to move and place tiny objects with far greater precision. The microscale deals with tiny objects, at levels that are too small to be manipulated by humans.

A newly developed microrobot defies the force of gravity by flying or levitating, powered by a magnetic field. It moves around and dexterously manipulates objects with magnets attached to microgrippers, remotely controlled by a laser-focusing beam.
Credit: Image courtesy of University of Waterloo

A University of Waterloo engineering research team has developed the world's first flying microrobot capable of manipulating objects for microscale applications.

Related Articles


The microrobot discovery provides researchers with more control over the microscale environment, allowing them to move and place tiny objects with far greater precision. The microscale deals with tiny objects, at levels that are too small to be manipulated by humans.

Behrad Khamesee, director of UW's Maglev (Magnetically Levitated) Microrobotics Laboratory, heads the team that built the prototype flying MicroElectroMechanical Systems (MEMS) robot.

The microrobot defies the force of gravity by flying or levitating, powered by a magnetic field. It moves around and dexterously manipulates objects with magnets attached to microgrippers, remotely controlled by a laser-focusing beam.

It can be used for micro-manipulation, a technique that enables precise positioning of micro objects. Applications of micro-manipulation include micro-assembly of mechanical components, handling of biological samples or even microsurgery.

"We have developed a magnetically levitated microrobot, which is a new technology for manipulation using flying microrobots," said Khamesee, a professor of mechanical and mechatronics engineering skilled in developing micro-scale devices using magnetic levitation.

"We are the first in the world to make such a floating robot equipped with microgrippers. It can enter virtually any space and can be operated in a sealed enclosure by a person outside, which makes it useful for handling biohazardous materials or working in vacuum chambers and clean rooms."

Magnetic levitation is used to position the microrobot in a three-dimensional space, employing an external magnetic drive mechanism. The mechanism controls that magnetic field by using feedback from position sensors in order to position the microrobot.

Since the power is supplied externally, the microrobot does not carry a power source or a controller, which enhances its maneuverability.

Thanks to magnetic levitation, the microrobot positions itself easily on complex surfaces -- a key advantage over crawling or walking robots. As well, because it can fly, the microrobot avoids friction and adhesion forces.

It has high maneuverability because it works without such mechanical components as connection arms or wires. Dust-free motion and operability in closed environments are other key features of the microrobot.

Khamesee, along with a graduate student, Caglar Elbuken, and his colleague Mustafa Yavuz, have submitted a paper explaining the discovery to the Focused Section on Mechatronics for MEMS (MicroElectroMechanical Systems) and NEMS (NanoElectroMechanical Systems), published jointly by the IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) and ASME (American Society of Mechanical Engineers).


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Waterloo. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Waterloo. "Researchers Develop World's First Flying Microrobot For Microscale Applications." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 April 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090413205339.htm>.
University of Waterloo. (2009, April 14). Researchers Develop World's First Flying Microrobot For Microscale Applications. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 6, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090413205339.htm
University of Waterloo. "Researchers Develop World's First Flying Microrobot For Microscale Applications." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090413205339.htm (accessed March 6, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Matter & Energy News

Friday, March 6, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Gas Production Cut on Earthquake Fears

Gas Production Cut on Earthquake Fears

Reuters - Business Video Online (Mar. 5, 2015) The Dutch government has cut production at Europe&apos;s largest gas field in Groningen amid concerns over earthquakes which are damaging local churches. As Amy Pollock reports the decision - largely politically-motivated - could have big economic conseqeunces. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Star Wars-Inspired Prototype Creates Holographic Display

Star Wars-Inspired Prototype Creates Holographic Display

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Mar. 5, 2015) A prototype holographic display named Leia - after the Star Wars princess who appeared in holographic form asking Obi-Wan Kenobu for help - is demonstrated at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
IKEA and Samsung Launch Embedded Wireless Charging Range

IKEA and Samsung Launch Embedded Wireless Charging Range

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Mar. 5, 2015) Samsung and IKEA hope their new embedded wireless charging products, launched at Barcelona&apos;s Mobile World Congress, will tempt consumers eager for plugless power. Jim Drury reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Samsung Unveils $30,000 'Dream Doghouse'

Samsung Unveils $30,000 'Dream Doghouse'

Buzz60 (Mar. 5, 2015) On display at the Crufts dog show in England, the &apos;dog kennel of the future&apos; comes with features like a doggie treadmill and Samsung tablet. Mike Janela (@mikejanela) has more. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins