Researchers at the Italian Institute of Technology are working on a new Compliant Humanoid, and its legs have successfully taken their first steps. The compliance demonstrated in the video below is what differentiates the legs from most other robots. Hopefully things will work out ok after they reconnect the upper body.
In order to explore compliant humanoid characteristics, we developed a passive compliant bipedal robot. The robot has a total 17 of DOF (degrees of freedom); 6 active and 1 passive (toe joint) DOF in each leg, and 3 active DOF at the waist to be able to obtain greater motion flexibility. Each joint incorporates three position sensors (2 absolute and 1 relative) and one torque sensor. The robot is also equipped with 6-axis Force/Torque sensors at the ankles and five 1-axis load cells on the foot sole. In addition, cCub has a 3-axis rate gyro sensor and a 3-axis accelerometer, located at the pelvis.
In its electronic hardware structure, the main controller is an Intel Core 2 Duo 1.5 GHz dual processor with 3.0 GB RAM, running on a 32-bit GNU/Linux operating system that is based on a real time Xenomai extension. Data communication is performed via real-time Ethernet protocol called RTnet. These are the preliminary dynamic walking experiments conducted on the compliant humanoid. Walking patterns are generated using ZMP criterion and computed in real-time.
[source: IITVideos @ YouTube]