More information

ASURO Another Unique and Small Robot from Oberpfaffenhofen

DLR robot JUSTIN. Credit: DLR
DLR robot JUSTIN. Credit: DLR

"Robot" is from a Czech word meaning "worker". And robots are made to work, carrying out tasks that people don't want to do, or cannot do, themselves. There's lots to do for these laborers made of steel and sheetmetal.

As industrial robots they populate industrial assembly lines, painting cars, operating welding equipment and transporting heavy components. Worldwide they help us to crack human genetic codes and search for effective medications. In the operating room they are remotely controlled by doctors to carry out complicated operations or assist surgeons as tireless, intelligent cameramen. They shear sheep for farmers. In the house they dust furniture and outside they mow the lawn. Robots even defuse bombs and are helpful in space: the robots "Spirit" and its twin "Opportunity" were put to work travelling around on Mars in order to have a close look at it for us.

Get acquainted with one of the mobile robots! You'll learn some of the basics of mechanics, electronics and information technology. Try it yourself. Put together the little wheeled "ASURO" and give him a job to do. If afterward he can independently investigate his surroundings, then you've programmed him correctly!

How are we improving the abilities of robots?

Formerly, the emphasis in robotics was on optimizing their use in industrial manufacturing. Today, we're more interested in using robots in science and research. At the German Aerospace Center an important research emphasis is on improving robots for applications in medicine technology. We're also working on developing a new generation of multisensor lightweight robots for use both on earth and in space activities.

How can I breathe life into the little robot "ASURO"?

Try it with teamwork. How? Using tools, a soldering iron and original industrial components. Will he move? What can you teach him? Give it a try. Program him so that he can independently carry out some task you give him. And wonder in the process whether he'll end up doing what you want him to do, or develop his own independent personality!