Professor Gordon Cheng and his team at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have developed small hexagonal plates that robots can use as electronic skin, giving them a sense of touch. Their latest project was covering a human-sized robot with 1,260 of these cells, thus creating the world’s first autonomous humanoid robot with artificial skin covering its entire body. Yes, even the soles of its feet. Read more for a video and additional information.
The H-1 robot is covered in 1,260 hexagonal cells equipped with 13,000 different sensors, located on its upper body, arms, legs as well as the soles of its feet. This enables it to balance on one leg, walk on uneven surfaces, and even give a person a hug without crushing them. The latter may sound simple, but it requires numerous real-time calculations due to the large number of contact points between the people hugging and the varying pressures.