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Image credit: Evan Ackerman/IEEE Spectrum

Latest robot roach can leap like the real thing

Get it off of me.
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Evan Ackerman/IEEE Spectrum

Look away entomophobes: a collaboration between South Korea's Seoul National University and UC Berkeley has created an unholy robotic cockroach that can not only crawl around to gross you out, but can also jump a solid five feet in the air and then prop itself up and keep on walking.

The JumpRoACH is a simple, two-ounce device with six crawling feet and a diamond-shaped jumping/launching mechanism powered by eight stretchy latex bands and small DC motor. While the usefulness of a robotic insect is debatable, it is definitely staying true to its source material. the major robotics breakthrough here is the robo-roach's ability to actually control the power of its tiny catapult mechanism and time its launch so it makes the jump. While the JumpRoACH (thankfully) can't fly just yet, it does have wings it can open to flip itself over onto its feet and keep on marching into your nightmares. Observe:

While this is not the first robotic cockroach designed at UC Berkeley, we can all be thankful that we're not dealing with an army of actual robot zombie cockroaches.

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