A quick look at some of the wondrous work in robotics done by Festo.

Engineering Company Festo Is Creating Robots Based On Nature

German engineering firm Festo is creating a robot army. Sounds scary, right? But there’s no need to fear a “Skynet”-type apocalypse quite yet, because these robots want to do good by making laborious tasks easier in the factories of the future. And they’re using nature as their inspiration.

Festo summarizes the motivation behind their research on their website: “Gripping, moving, controlling and measuring – nature performs all of these tasks instinctively, easily and efficiently. What could be more logical than to examine these natural phenomena and learn from them?”

Every great dream begins with a dreamer.
Always remember, you have within you the strength,
the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.
- Harriet Tubman

In last weeks post, we saw how the motion of particles that move along straight lines creates the illusion of a spinning circle. This time we actually let the individual particles move in circular paths and observe various patterns that result when the relative phase of each particle is varied. Here, “phase” just means where along the circular path a certain particle is when compared to the others.

In the first animation, each of the particles arrive at the edge of the black circle at the same time to create the effect of a spinning and contracting/expanding circle.

In the second animation, the particles are phased just right to create the illusion of a circle that slides along the edge of the black circle. This is similar to the Tusi motion from the previous post except in this instance the circle doesn’t spin.

In the third animation, the phases are adjusted to make it seem like the particles move along a straight line that spins around, but really each particle is still only moving along a circular path. This is a somewhat opposite effect from the Tusi motion where the particles were always moving along straight lines.

Inspired by the not-Tusi-couple.

Mathematica code:

``Manipulate[ Graphics[  {{Black,    Disk[{0, 0}, 1.05]},   Table[    Rotate[     {White, Opacity[o],      Circle[{.525, 0}, .525]},     n*2 Pi/m, {0, 0}],    {n, 1, m, 1}],   Table[    Rotate[     {White,      Disk[       .525 {1 + Cos[-2 Pi (p*n/m + t)], Sin[-2 Pi (p*n/m + t)]}, .02]},     n*2 Pi/m, {0, 0}],    {n, 1, m, 1}]},  PlotRange -> 1.1, ImageSize -> 500], {{m, 8, "circles"}, 1, 20, 1}, {{o, .5, "path opacity"}, 1, 0}, {{p, 0, "phase"}, 0, 2, 1}, {t, 0, 1}]``