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Amoeboid Locomotion Having High Fluidity by a Modular Robot
Masahiro Shimizu and Akio Ishiguro

Investigation has so far been with a fully-decentralized algorithm that can control the morphology of a module robot called Slimebot comprised of many identical mechanical modules in accordance with the environment encountered. One of the most significant features of the approach of us, the authors of this paper is that explicit exploitation has been promoted with “the emergent phenomena” stemming from the interplay between the control system and the mechanical system for the purpose of controlling the morphology in real time. Confirmation has already been made with the fact that the method in question brings about remarkable real-time adaptivity and scalability. The paper discusses a control method by which fluidity of the modular robot is enhanced. From a more specific standpoint, it should be confessed that “sol-gel transition” was encouraging enough for the authors to make a trial of inducing “protoplasmic streaming” in the inside of the modular robot. It is shown from simulation results that as fluidity is made higher, the modular robot is enhanced in its abilities. As far as knowledge is concerned, attempts to develop modular robots of so high fluidity have never been made.

Keywords: Amorphous robot, artificial amoeba, distributed intelligence.

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