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Human-Like Brain Helps Robot Out of Maze

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Its been known for some time that organic neuromorphic robots can learn. Now they can move autonomously.

Credit: Getty

A neuromorphic robot developed by researchers at the Netherlands' Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) and Germany's Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research can navigate mazes using a human brain-like model.

"Just as a synapse in a mouse brain is strengthened each time it takes the correct turn in a psychologist's maze, our device is 'tuned' by applying a certain amount of electricity," said TU/e's Imke Krauhausen.

"By tuning the resistance in the device, you change the voltage that control the motors."

The researchers built the robot from Lego's Mindstorms EV3 kit, combining two wheels, guiding software to ensure it can follow a line, and reflectance and touch sensors.

Krauhausen said the robot's sense and movement are mutually reinforced, while the incorporated polymer helps it retain learned behavior gathered from various runs through the maze.

From Eindhoven University of Technology (Netherlands)
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