My honors research project was to redesign a series of climbing robots that were being used by the Nano Robotics Lab. The robot series was known as 4 Bar and was part of the lab's research on constructing micro-scale robots that climb surfaces with synthetic gecko fibers. Researchers in the lab were frustrated with the 4-Bar series because it was unreliable and could not be repaired if it broke. My partner and I redesigned the robot to address these concerns and improve its performance.
I created an accurate CAD model of the robot, since the lab's models were inaccurate and partially corrupted. Using the updated model we completely re-designed 4-Bar. Our design was more effective at climbing walls, took a fraction of the time to assemble, and was easy to take apart and repair. This was in contrast to the original 4-Bar design, which had to be discarded if a part broke. Our design became part of a permanent exhibit at the Boston Museum of Science.
We later enhanced the design so 4-Bar could perform a zero-point turn.