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A humanoid robot that sweats to keep cool

A humanoid robot that sweats to keep cool

How could anyone do press-ups for 10 minutes straight without overheating? The Kengoro robot, developed at the University of Tokyo, is capable of such a miracle.

The 1.7m tall, 56kg musculoskeletal humanoid can, despite its 108 motors, do press-ups for 11 minutes or run for half a day without overheating.

The solution to keep the humanoid robot cool as it works out is very simple: it sweats.

Since its structure does not allow space for the fans and radiators that are typically used to cool computers, engineers created small gaps in the robot’s frame that allow water to seep out, therefore cooling areas that are most likely to overheat. This technique, like how humans sweat, is a lightweight alternative to traditional cooling systems and prevents the heat being a constraint on the robot’s performance.

Kengoro the Robot That Sweats

Video credit: IEEE Spectrum

Kengoro can run for half a day on about a cup of deionized water. Testing shows that this method of cooling works three times better than air cooling, and significantly better than circulating water through the interior channel.


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