Latest developments

Our bees are dying. Numbers are decreasing constantly.

Luckily there is reassuring news- a team at Harvard’s Wyss Institute have been hard at work on their (completely innocent) plans to develop “a colony of artificial insects.” called the RoboBee.

Researchers have turned to nature in the development of this robot and although the RoboBee resembles our much loved bumble bee in size and form, they are being developed without the sting. It is hoped that this robot will be able to access places where currently it is dangerous for a human being to go and will perform many tasks.

The latest development by these scientists is the ability to perch on an object, like other animals, in order to conserve energy.

This might seem insignificant to many of us but the longer battery lives could have serious implications for other scientific and robotic fields. Researchers say that the RoboBee’s perching technology could advance the field of microrobotics and its range of applications when exploring the depths of land and sea deemed unsafe for humans to travel.

Watch this video to enjoy this latest discovery:

The scientists also hope to develop an on-board power source for the tiny drones, allowing the RoboBee to stay airborne for even longer. However this is not something that is expected to happen in the short term.

Vocabulary

  • reassuring (adjective) to restore confidence again
  • resembles (verb) look like
  • sting (noun) part of the bee that secretes venom
  • perch (noun) sit in order to rest
  • airborne(adjective) be in the air
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