Replicator

Robotic Evolutionary Self-Programming and Self-Assembling Organisms

(duration: 03/2008 - 09/2013 /// funding: Cordis FP7 - Cognitive Systems and Robotics)

Project Summary

The Replicator project focuses on the development of an advanced robotic system, consisting of a super-large-scale swarm of small autonomous mobile micro-robots that are capable of self-assembling into large artificial organisms. These robotic organisms posses common energy and information buses as well as reliable legged, wheeled or climbing locomotion, based om modular sub-systems which can be autonomously reconfigured. Thanks to the heterogeneity of the elementary robots and their capability to share resources and communicate, the robotic organisms are able to achieve a large computational power, and rich close-and far-range sensing. The energy is autonomously harvested from external power sources.

The main goal of the project is to develop novel principles underlying these robotic organisms, such as self-configuration, self-adjustment, and self learning. The bio-inspired evolutionary approach and evolvable hardware structure adopted in this project enable the robotic organisms to emerge new functionalities, to develop their own cognitive and control structures and, finally, to work autonomously in uncertain situations without human supervision. Ultimately, these robotic organisms, which are extremely adaptive, robust, scalable and rich in sensing and actuating capabilities, will be used to build autonomous sensor networks, capable of self-spreading and self-maintaining in open-ended, even hazardous, environments.

Links

Replicator Tech Blog (by Anne van Rossum) gives a detailed look into the Replicator kitchen.

Robot Cognition - a hotspot for research on robot cognition; anything that makes a robot smart.

Joint REPLICATOR / SYMBRION website

Publications

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Popular media:

Mensenmassa's en dierenzwermen (video), Labyrint, 26 October 2011

Robotmetamorphose, kubusjes functioneren als één organisme, De Ingenieur, 29 October 2010

De robot op ontdekkingsreis, Mechatronica Magazine, 21 January 2011

Partners

Universitaet StuttgartUniversitaet GrazKarlsruher Institut fuer Technologie

Sheffield Hallam UniversityScuola Superiore de PisaCzech Technical University

Fraunhofer GesellschaftIMAUbisense


Related topics Related topics

The complexity of modular robotics

The Replicator project succesfully passed its final review in Stuttgard, Germany
01/10/2013

[VIDEO] Replicator Review

Watch video presentations of the latest developments in the project.
23/05/2011

Inside Look at Replicator Project

Researcher Anne van Rossum starts tech blog related to the Replicator project.
15/08/2008

Kick-off Replicator Project

Almende joins European research project in swarm robotics.
02/01/2008