Run! Top 5 Fastest Robots to the Rescue

Sept. 20, 2012 — On average, a human can run approximately 12 to 15 mph — not bad if you’re chasing down an errant Frisbee on a Sunday afternoon. But what about during an emergency? In moments like such, speed can often mean the difference between life and death. Add 60 pounds of protective gear and equipment that first responders often wear and speed and agility become a sluggish after thought.

Is there anyone — or anything — else to turn to for a speedy rescue?

“You can always send in fireman, but when it gets really bad, you’d rather lose a machine,” said Jessy Grizzle, Jerry and Carol Levin Professor of Engineering at the University of Michigan.

Grizzle is one of many engineers and roboticists currently working on running-robot projects for rescue efforts, humanitarian assistance and military transport. And these machines aren’t your stereotypical, lumbering droids with clodhopper gaits. On the contrary, a couple of them have some real giddy-up.

“These are some of the fastest legged robots that I’m aware of in today’s industrial and academic laboratories,” said Grizzle.

We’ve put together a list of fleet-footed machines that, to the best of our knowledge, represents the Top 5 fastest running robots. See if you can keep up.

Read more: Run! Top 5 Fastest Robots to the Rescue : Discovery News

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