For some time now, Disney has been quietly stirring some amazing experiments that could easily blow your mind. Even if you think about a robot car, the company has a clever workaround for it. Along with ETH Zurich, Disney Research Zurich created a small, four-wheeled robot with an anomalous ability to climb up walls.
Known as VertiGo, the robot can climb the wall by making a near-seamless transition from the ground. Thanks to its pair of tiltable propellers that provide thrust onto the wall and make it a mind-boggling wall rider. The rear propeller applies thrust towards the wall and the front propeller applies in an upward direction that results in a flip onto the wall. It comes with two steerable wheels through which you can control the robot just like a radio-controlled car.
“By transitioning from the ground to a wall and back again, VertiGo extends the ability of robots to travel through urban and indoor environments,” say the researchers. “The robot is able to move on a wall quickly and agility.”
In order to make the vehicle extremely light, its chassis is made out of carbon fiber. For more complex three-dimensional parts, 3D-printed parts in conjunction with carbon rods are used that make it strong but not heavy. Though VertiGo is able to climb the wall, it won’t carry any cargo with it.
Disney hasn’t commented about when VertiGo is going to be a real world product. It might look like a fun remote-controlled car, but it could be essential for rescue missions where it’s nearly impossible for a human to reach.