Boston Dynamics officially took the wraps off its rolling robot ‘Handle’. We caught a glimpse of the research robot earlier this month when a video was leaked from an investor presentation, but now the Google-owned company has officially unveiled its latest robot creation.
Handle combines the “best of both worlds” says Boston Dynamics’ Founder and CEO Marc Raibert to Automaton. The design is bipedal but introduces wheels instead of feet. The dynamics, balance, and mobile control principles are similar to Boston Dynamics’ biped and quadruped robots, but Handle consists of just 10 actuated joints, making it significantly less complex.
Handle shares the same torso as its humanoid brethren Atlas. The arms have been modified as well. Specs are what you’d expect with Boston Dynamics’ machines; Handle stands 6.5 feet tall, travels at 9 miles per hour with a vertical height of 4 feet. The newfangled robot can “handle” stairs, obstacles, and 100-pound loads. Equipped with an untethered electric power supply, Handle can trek outdoors for roughly 15 miles before needing to juice up.
Solely a research robot, Boston Dynamics doesn’t see a production version of Handle in the near-future. So don’t your hopes up of this robot rolling down your neighborhood sidewalk to deliver groceries. You can count on Starship Technologies for that.