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DIL package centipede robot

BEAM-type robot in an integrated circuit package
  [vote for,

DIL packages for integrated circuits with their parallel lines of legs have often been compared to centipedes and like centipedes they tend to have fewer than a hundred legs. With a little modification, a kind of system-on-a- chip could be made to use its own pins for locomotion.

Arthropod legs, if I remember correctly, respond to each other's movements locally, and even if they didn't, they still could work that way. A pair of pins moving at one end of a DIL package could trigger a wave of movements alternating due to a slight delay on one side. Memory metal could be used to some extent - heating the pin would cause it to shift, then a signal travels down the line of pins inside the chip.

In order to move sideways, the pins could be extended laterally on one side while being pulled towards the body on the other. This could be achieved by induction motors and the insides of the legs being made of steel.

The upper surface of the package could be made of photoelectric material, divided into sections so that the chip can locate the direction of the highest intensity of light by comparing the signals via analogue to digital converters. The light could also be used to supply power to a battery or capacitor within the chip. Small piezoelectric crystals could be used as microphones to give the beast a sense of hearing too.

The basic mode of operation for the electronic centipede could resemble those testudo robots built in the mid- twentieth century, which sought out light and power supplies in an artificial environment and moved backwards, forwards in arcs, except that these would be more rectilinear. An EPROM within the device could store instructions for movement and other behaviour.

Various applications, such as getting them to write with inky legs or maybe flock together. None particularly useful of course.

Clearly the actual integrated circuit would have to be protected from the atmosphere since the legs are now going to be moving around, so wrap it in plastic and have it communicate with the legs by something like induction.

nineteenthly, Aug 30 2015


       DIL robot sees breadboard, thinks "It's a trap!"
lurch, Sep 02 2015

       Now we know where all those ICs we bought over the decades have gone. Damn things have crawled away and built a nest somewhere.
8th of 7, Sep 03 2015

       self assembling computer? Can we make it larger and have a self assembling house wiring system?   

       Go big or go home: self assembling national electrical infrastructure.
Voice, Sep 03 2015


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