final project for Informal Robotics | Harvard GSD | Fall 2015

Chuck Hoberman

Catty Dan Zhang
Anu Akkineni

rBAT is an ongoing research project that inspired by the flying behavior of birds and bats in the nature, and the advances of aerodynamics and control of man-made flying machine and robots. It challenges the capacity of using informal techniques to create robust flapping motion which generates a certain amount of thrust. rBAT is consisted of four major components- a central double-layered mechanism that creates the flapping behavior; a tail which balances the body weight while generating downwards thrust; a motor and gear system based off a four bar linkage which transfers the continuous rotary motion into rotary input within certain range for driving the flapping mechanism and the tail movements; a pair of wings made out of a rigid skeleton and thin polyester film, containing two sets of passive linkages for compliance during a full stroke of flapping. rBAT is being developed with testing equipment and currently moves forwards and backwards on a pair of horizontal rails. Its directionality of movement is controlled by the motor speed.


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