Video Highlights
Robotics Challenge


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Video Highlights


Legged Locomotion Research


Flight Research

  • The Perching Glider. This video describes our glider (no propellors) landing on a perch. The glider initially flies toward the perch at high speed, and must then decelerate quickly to land on a wire. The entire trajectory is just under 1 second; the video includes high-speed video footage of the maneuver. For more info see the perching glider project page.

  • Robotic Birds. The first video shows the first flight of one of our robotic birds (piloted by a human). This bird was built in our lab, but is a replica of a hobbyist ornithopter designed by Sean Kinkade. The second video shows a slow-motion shot of the flapping, which reveals the complicated interaction between the flexible wing and the surrounding flow. The third video shows the first autonomous flight of our Phoenix ornithopter - a substantially redesigned machine with onboard sensing and computation.

  • The Flapping Plate. The following video shows our experiments on an apparatus built by collaborator Jun Zhang at NYU. The experiment uses a symmetric flat plate as the simplest model of a flapping wing, and this video shows a variant with a flexible trailing edge. Using policy gradient learning run directly in the real experiment (no models), we have designed a control system which can achieve both higher speeds and a higher energy effectiveness than the initial sinusoidal gait.



  • 6.095 - Humanoid Robotics Competition. This class allows MIT students to assemble and program a small humanoid robot (KHR-2HV, sold by Kondo) during IAP (less than a month). The challenges are to walk on the flat, walk up stairs and to fight other robots (last robot standing wins). Below are videos of some of the best walking gaits obtained so far.