How Did Roboticists Get This Ancient Fossil To Walk?

Thanks to the latest technology in ‘paleo-biorobotics’, this nearly three hundred million-year-old fossil is WALKING. This little guy is the.

Thanks to the latest technology in ‘paleo-biorobotics’,
this nearly three hundred million-year-old fossil is WALKING. This little guy is the result of years of
advancements in CT scanning and is changing the way we study ancient animals. It’s now evolving our perspective on how
they walked and even breathed. Early tomography machines were invented to
look inside your body, and with the creation of computational techniques, they have the
ability to digitally reconstruct the inside of living, and fossilized structures without
invasive measures. But don’t go running inside a paleontologist’s
CT machine, it’s slightly different. They use micro-CT scanning which sends higher
doses of X-rays that can penetrate rock and give finer detail to specimens. This added precision helps for scanning fossils
like the one used for “OroBOT”. The original fossil for this invention is
the Orobates pabsti, first described in 2004, and thought to have roamed the earth before
the dinosaurs. This species is suspected to be a close cousin
of the last common ancestor of dinosaurs, reptiles, birds, and mammals. It’s also considered a stem amniote, an
evolutionary link from amphibians that reproduce in water, to land vertebrates who lay eggs. What makes it even more special, is that it’s
one of the oldest known vertebrates with a fully preserved skeleton, AND..wait for it,
footprints to match! By studying Orobates, we’d have a greater
understanding of how mammals, like us, evolved. Obviously, a fossil like this is too good
to be slept on, so scientists from Switzerland and Germany teamed up to unravel the creature’s
locomotion. They started by analyzing X-ray videos of
modern animals linked to Orobates, like salamanders, skinks, iguanas, and caimans. Biologists observed their gait, or manner
of walking, paying close attention to key biomechanics such as: how erect the animal
stood on its legs; how bent its backbone was; and how its joints bent as it walked. They then created a walking computer simulation
that matched perfectly with digital footprints. This simulation identified different positions
where the bones did not bump or become disjointed. And while this simulation was awesome, it
couldn’t exactly represent the physics of the real world. So roboticists used the digital data to create
OroBOT. OroBOT might look vaguely familiar if you
ever saw the design of Pleurobot back in 2015. It was inspired by the same mechanics but
made to fit the skeletal frame of Orobates instead. Each limb of the robot was separated into
actuated joints to give it better mobility. In total, OroBOT has twenty-eight servomotors. Each one is used to move its limbs and is
powered by cables linked back to a computer; which feeds OroBOT its positioning reference
signals, or its controls. Every leg forms a kinematic chain which begins
at the girdle and ends at the foot. But OroBOT couldn’t have been built without
the original micro-CT scans made in 2015. And even though not every dinosaur is becoming
a robot, scans like these are revealing other unknown aspects of dinosaurs, like how some
species breathed. Ankylosaurs are known for their heavily armored
exteriors. Paleontologists wondered how these huge dinos
stayed cool during the hot Mesozoic period and original CT scans revealed they had long,
coiled nasal passages. At first, scientists weren’t sure why, but
with simulations using advanced computational fluid dynamics, they simulated how the air
moved within the dinos’ nostrils. Simulations revealed there was a significant
heat exchange system within the canals. CT scans showed hot blood vessels ran along
the nasal passages, losing heat to the air as it traveled through. And simultaneously, evaporation of moisture
in the passages cooled down veins which carried blood to the brain to keep it from overheating. They basically had a ‘built-in air conditioner.’ cool.The more you know. So I hope you love CT scanning more than you
ever did before because it’s practically the foundation for all this innovative research. The team from OroBOT says the research in
this field doesn’t end here either. They hint that there is potential to build
on what they have, with research considering muscles or softer tissue. You can even check out their open source data
online, and play and analyze on your own. So while we’re not walking around with cloned
dinosaurs, maybe we can walk around with robotic ones. Maybe. Let’s not get our hopes up. OroBOT wasn’t built in a day, the team has
been working on this project for the last 8 years! I can only imagine what we’ll get if we
give ‘em another decade. Don’t forget to subscribe for more dino
news and check out this video on how much we’re still learning about Neanderthals. We’ll see you next time and thanks for watching

100 thoughts on “How Did Roboticists Get This Ancient Fossil To Walk?”

  1. Therapist: Walking Robotic Ancient Fossil Of Reptile isn’t real, it can’t hurt you…

    Walking Robotic Ancient Fossil Of Reptile:

  2. Zombie Deer Epidemic will lead to Zombie apocolypse now we have Robotic Dinosaurs

    Wow we are gonna be extinct in few years with these other things here

  3. This is kinda screwed up, these scientists are disturbing the remains of ancient creatures. For instance say you died and you are a spirit would you be mad if you found out people dug you out of your grave and are playing with your skeleton?

  4. Someday we're gonna get a machine that revive fossils, y'know like helix fossils and plume fossils and other majiggies

  5. Just a question, sorry if I look ignorant but why? I’d much rather have this work be done on humans or on space travel or curing illnesses

  6. You know, there is a whole sub genre of horror named Necro-Roboticism that tells me this is a HORRIBLE IDEA

  7. This is the only reason I wanna get into robotics … Build a legion and let them stroll around protecting my home .

  8. Most average people already know how robotistics made this skeleton walk or generally know “how” they did it.

    I think you should name the vid better

  9. So it walked like modern day lizards ?. K great… We definitely needed to spend alot of money on this very useful discovery.

  10. I love robotics but I believe it's time we invent a new type of synthetic muscle, I know there are prototypes out there already, but they're slow as hell and non efficient.

  11. Listing birds separately from dinosaurs…gonna have to dock points for that one.
    Disregarding that, this is cool concept!

  12. oh i can see it now, life-like robotic dinosaurs in petting parks. like having an allosaur 'cept it wont bite you in half. i want one now.

  13. Is that a fake plastic tree tattoo? Radiohead fan possibly? Or maybe you just love christmas lol

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