Video Friday: Robot Tentacle, Mars Flyer, and Destructive Drone Competition

Your weekly selection of awesome robot videos

Image: Festo via YouTube

Video Friday is your weekly selection of awesome robotics videos, collected by your Automaton bloggers. We’ll also be posting a weekly calendar of upcoming robotics events for the next two months; here’s what we have so far (send us your events!):

WeRobot 2017 – March 31-1, 2017 – New Haven, Conn., USA
Automate – April 3-3, 2017 – Chicago, Ill., USA
ITU Robot Olympics – April 7-9, 2017 – Istanbul, Turkey
ROS Industrial Consortium – April 07, 2017 – Chicago, Ill., USA
U.S. National Robotics Week – April 8-16, 2017 – USA
NASA Swarmathon – April 18-20, 2017 – NASA KSC, Florida, USA
RoboBusiness Europe – April 20-21, 2017 – Delft, Netherlands
RoboGames 2017 – April 21-23, 2017 – Pleasanton, Calif., USA
ICARSC – April 26-30, 2017 – Coimbra, Portugal
AUVSI Xponential – May 8-11, 2017 – Dallas, Texas, USA
AAMAS 2017 – May 8-12, 2017 – Sao Paulo, Brazil
Austech – May 9-12, 2017 – Melbourne, Australia
Innorobo – May 16-18, 2017 – Paris, France
NASA Robotic Mining Competition – May 22-26, 2017 – NASA KSC, Fla., USA

Let us know if you have suggestions for next week, and enjoy today’s videos.


Festo’s Bionic Learning Network prototypes for this year are a bit less crazy
than we’re used to, but they’re also far more practical, with immediate potential applications, especially in collaborative robotics:

Festo presents a bionic gripper called the OctopusGripper, which is derived from an octopus tentacle. Not only can the flexible silicone structure grip softly and securely – it also fulfils the strict criteria of a soft robotics component.

Free-moving, intuitive to operate and safe when interacting with the user: the pneumatic lightweight robot is based on the human arm and has great potential as a sensitive helper for human–robot collaboration in the future.

From sensitive to powerful – the pneumatic lightweight robot can fluently perform the natural movements of an elephant’s trunk and an octopus’s tentacle. The special 3D textile knitted fabric around the bellows structures gives the kinematics tremendous power potential.

[ Festo ]


Imagine being able to survey more parts of another planet like Mars than ever before. Orbiters and rovers have been successful so far but engineers keep looking for new ways to gather information. One way may be by using an unmanned aerial vehicle like this Mars Flyer concept.

NASA has also been experimenting with a small drone helicopter for Mars rovers. While certainly very cool, these are unfortunately usually the first things that get axed for budget, time, or viability.

[ NASA Langley ]


I kinda do this all the time:

[ YouTube ] via [ Gizmodo ]


A little bit …read more

Read more here:: IeeeSpectrum

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