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Why these scientists created remote-controlled cyborg cockroaches ?

© Sreejithk2000/Wikipedia

Researchers from Osaka University (Japan) and Nanyang Technological University (Singapore) shared their experience in this publication. They equipped cockroaches; more specifically Madagascar cockroaches (Gromphadorhina portosa) devices allowing them to be controlled remotely. These cyborg insects could then be of valuable assistance in exploring and intervening in perilous and inaccessible environments. A bit like the jellyfish used to monitor the oceans.

The goals of astonishing technology

These giant cockroaches can measure up to 7 cm, which certainly explains why these researchers chose them for this experiment. The latter are now equipped with a form of « backpacks » miniaturized with electrodes. Thanks to this equipment, operators can direct the cockroaches remotely, from left to right, exactly as one would do with a remote-controlled car.

What is the&# 8217;idea behind this strange project? Allow these “augmented” cockroaches to be deployed in areas where humans cannot access, such as damaged buildings following an earthquake. These insects would then play the role of auxiliaries, helping in rescue or research missions.

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Experiments and future implications

As you can see in the video above, tests show that these cockroaches, once equipped, manage to move in cohesion, like a swarm or an infantry unit. Their six legs help them navigate easily on all types of terrain and the device even allows them to avoid obstacles precisely and independently. If a cockroach were to get stuck or turn over, the others would work as a team to help him get back on his feet.

Once the battery in their backpack is exhausted, these little critters can come to recharge them with a robot also capable to provide them with sustenance in water and food. A rather judicious design.

The cyborg cockroach project is only the beginning, since this same team of researchers, led by Hirotaka Sato, is already working on another project: equipping tricolor crabs (Cardisoma armatum) with an equivalent device in order to complete the work cockroaches.

  • Researchers from Osaka University and Nanyang Technological University have developed a device to equip Madagascar cockroaches to control them remotely.
  • These insects, once equipped in this way, can move in swarms in rugged terrain inaccessible to humans.
  • The objective is to assist intervention teams in rescue and search operations in disaster areas.
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Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116