Playing Catch With Helicopters

Wed, 03/30/2011 - 6:58am

At the ETH Flying Machine Arena in Switzerland, researchers are figuring out all-new ways for robots to play "catch." These quatrocopters are paired with a motion-sensing camera above, and some complex computer software that allows them to predict the ball's trajectory for accurate bouncing. What's most interesting is not that the helicopters can sense the ball's movement, but react appropriately — that it can bounce the ball back to its opponent — meaning that robots in the future could be less jarring and more intelligent with their movements.

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