Cyborg Cockroaches, New Tool for Search and Rescue

Evacuation of the victims, especially the earthquake victims can take quite a long time. However, thanks to researchers at North Carolina State University, now it can be done quickly with the discovery of a new way.
Researchers turn Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches into remote control cockroach cyborgs. (Picture from:
They use the cockroaches are equipped with a small electronic backpack that can be driven by the controller.

A research paper recently released revealed that the engineers successfully tested a device that was strapped onto biobot Madagascar cockroach. To make biobot, the engineers used lightweight microchip and a wireless transceiver.

By using biobot tied over the head cockroach, engineers were able to direct these nocturnal animals along the curved line. With this success, the researchers hope to attach a miniature camera and sensors are used to monitor areas that are difficult to access.

"Our goal is to determine whether we can create a wireless interface with a cockroach biology strong and capable of breaking into small areas that are difficult to reach," said Alper Bozkurt, co-author of a paper and an assistant professor of electrical engineering at North Carofina State University.

"Ultimately, this discovery allows us to make the mobile web with smart sensors that use cockroaches to gather and transmit information. Accordingly, we can use it to find survivors in a building that had been destroyed by the earthquake," said Bozkurt.
Bozkurt also explain why researchers use a live cockroach than designing a robot with a small size. Bozkurt says. “We decided to use biobotic cockroaches in place of robots, as designing robots at that scale is very challenging and cockroaches are experts at performing in such a hostile environment." *** [SCIENCESPACEROBOTS | SRI | PIKIRAN RAKYAT 13092012]
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