Robot, Robotoad III, metal / plastic / electronic components, designed and made by the University of Southern Queensland, Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia, 1995-1999
Robotoad is constructed on an aluminium platform that has a perpendicular curvature at the rear, and two feet are attached to the bottom; the compressed air tubing array for controlling the foot suction sits on top of the platform, as does the electronics and cable port that connects to a PC. A cylinder with a hinged aluminium arm attaches the front leg array to the platform. The front legs have two suction feet and compressed air tubing. The toad ascends a surface by attaching itself to the surface with its compressed air-fed feet (a vacuum is created between the inside of the rubber foot and the surface) and then releasing one foot from the surface and moving it up; it re-attaches the foot and repeats the process with the next foot. It moves up in a horizontal letter H movement, that is, one front foot, then the next, then the process is mirrored by the rear feet (under the main platform of the unit).