The Inflatable Robotic Arms Race

What do you think inspired the appearance of Baymax in Disney’s film Big Hero 6? The Michelin Man? The Sta-Puft Marshmallow monster in Ghostbusters?

How about – an actual robot?

DARPA-funded technology developers are already actively at work on soft, air-filled robotics.

[Big Hero 6] co-director, Don Hall, has said he was inspired to cast Baymax as an air-filled, soft robot after he saw an inflatable robotic arm on a visit to Carnegie Mellon’s Robotics Institute. Carnegie Mellon’s work in soft robotics has been supported by DARPA and the National Science Foundation.

See a demo of the pneumatic arm here:

DARPA’s M3 program is also developing a robot that emulates the cheetah: moves fast, bounds over obstacles and doesn’t need a road.

[Thanks to James H. Burns for the story.]