Researchers at Tampere University’s robotics unit are working on a project called FAIRY, which aims to make chemicals fly. This team is led by How Zeng And Jingfeng Yang They have succeeded in making a polymer robot that is controlled by light and flies by wind.
Tampere researchers’ robot, which looks like a dandelion, is equipped with a soft actuator made of liquid crystal elastomer that can react to light. The research team has used light to change the shape of the robot and control actions related to its takeoff and landing, and will next focus on improving the material’s sensitivity to provide performance in sunlight and scaling it up to carry microelectronic devices, sensors, and biochemical compounds. .
Among the applications of the FAIRY robot, we can mention artificial pollination, in which millions of artificial seeds will be dispersed by natural winds and then directed to specific areas using light. written by GizmochinaThe FAIRY project, which started in September 2021, will be completed in five years. It is worth mentioning that the Max Planck Institute and Aalto University are also involved in the research and development stages of this robot.
Although the concept of light- and wind-controlled artificial turf is promising, there are still challenges such as precise control of the landing point, reusability, and biodegradability issues that need to be addressed. To solve these problems, close cooperation between material scientists and people working in the microrobotics unit of the university is very necessary. In the next steps, the researchers will focus on improving the sensitivity of the material to enable the device to function in sunlight. In addition, the research team plans to improve the structure of the materials used in FAIRY to be able to carry microelectronic devices such as GPS and sensors, as well as biochemical compounds.