BigDog is a dynamic quadruped robot that walks, runs, and carries heavy loads. It works as a pack mule to assist soldiers in carrying gear. You can even kick it, and this robotic beast won't notice.
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Did You Know?
The engine that powers BigDog was taken from a go-kart.
BigDog is a noisy robot, and some people say it sounds like a swarm of killer bees.
In 2008, a pair of comedians improvised a BigDog costume and appeared as the robot in a video that went viral online.
- Able to carry payloads of 150 kg (340 lb). Capable of dynamic walking on rubble, mud, snow, water, ice, and slopes up to 35 degrees.
- 125 cm | 49.2 in
- 100 cm | 39.4 in
- 30 cm | 11.8 in
- 113.4 kg | 250 lb
- 11.26 km/h | 7 mph
- Legs with joint position and force sensors. Body with gyroscope, LIDAR, and stereo vision system. Hydraulic system with pressure and temperature sensors.
- 16 custom hydraulic actuators
- Hydraulic pump driven by 15-horsepower internal combustion engine.
- PC/104 board with Pentium 4 class CPU
- QNX real-time OS with custom C++ code for control, sensing, data collection, and communication.
- DEGREES OF FREEDOM (DOF)
- 20 (16 powered, 4 passive)
Boston Dynamics, led by Marc Raibert, started developing BigDog in 1995 with funding from DARPA. The robot used many ideas conceived by Raibert at the Leg Laboratory, which originated in 1980 at Carnegie Mellon and moved to MIT in 1986. Researchers from NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory and Harvard University collaborated on the BigDog project. The goal was to build an unmanned, legged vehicle with rough terrain mobility superior to that of existing wheeled and tracked vehicles. The ideal system would travel anywhere a person or animal could go using their legs, run for many hours at a time, and carry its own fuel and payload. Boston Dynamics built and tested several versions of BigDog. In 2011, the company announced that it was developing a bigger, stronger quadruped, called AlphaDog.