Four-Legged MIT Dribblebot Soccer Robot Is A Multi-Terrain Workhorse

Check out the MIT Dribblebot soccer robot!

Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have developed a brand new MIT Dribblebot soccer robot that’s able to kick a ball across different types of terrain. Now, can the man’s best robot-friend score a goal?

The MIT Dribblebot soccer robot can navigate through sand, snow, gravel, and even mud. It’s able to adjust to differing effects on the velocity of the ball using a combination of onboard sensing and processing. Even better, the Dribblebot is nothing short of tough as it can recover after falling.

Similar to Boston Dynamics’ robot, Spot, the Dribblebot moves with its set of four legs. The brains at MIT’s Improbable Artificial Intelligences Lab have installed a camera on its head, which allows it to intercept a ball toward its path. Not only does the Dribblebot excel in sports, but it can also utilize its camera to aid in the search for those in need in the event of a disaster.

“If you look around today, most robots are wheeled,” said the director of the Improbably AI Lab, Professor Pulkit Agrawal. “But imagine that there’s a disaster scenario, flooding, or an earthquake, and we want robots to aid humans in the search-and-rescue process. We need the machines to go over terrains that aren’t flat, and wheeled robots can’t traverse those landscapes.”

According to Business Insider, researchers have been developing ball-dribbling robots for over 20 years. We have to admit that we’re quite impressed by the MIT Dribblebot soccer robot.

“The whole point of studying legged robots is to go terrains outside the reach of current robotic systems,” Agrawal added. “Our goal in developing algorithms for legged robots is to provide autonomy in challenging and complex terrains that are currently beyond the reach of robotic systems.”

Dribblebot Soccer Robot

Related Articles