Video: DARPA tire-changing robot, almost as good as a mechanic

Credit: DARPAtv

Sometimes it seems like a lot of the robots we find in development are dedicated to carrying out exceedingly specific, and often impractical tasks that offer little in the way of addressing some of our most basic needs. But a new video demonstration from the Pentagon's Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) offers hope that one day the vital task of emergency roadside assistance may come via an automaton.

In a new video posted this week, DARPA shows off its Autonomous Robotic Manipulation (ARM) actually changing a tire. The demonstration is designed to illustrate how humans can work in tandem with robots using only "task-level instructions" rather than requiring the human operator to deliver specific, step-by-step guidance to the robotic system.

Unfortunately, while ARM can successfully remove the lug nut fasteners, as well as take off and replace the tire, the robot still does not have the ability to place the lug nuts on the new tire. So, at least for now, this is one thing humans can still do slightly better than robots.

DARPA also hopes to use its research involving the ARM system as a means to develop better prosthetic devices. You can see the ARM in action, complete with awesome spy drama music soundtrack, in the video below.

Via New York Times

For the latest tech stories, follow DVICE on Twitter
at @dvice or find us on Facebook