History of the Leg Laboratory


1979
Ivan Sutherland provides slush funding so Raibert could build first hopping machine.
1980
ARPA decides to fund development of hopping machine.
1982
Planar one-legged machine hops in place, travels at a specified rate, keeps its balance when disturbed, and jumps over small obstacles.
1983
Three-dimensional one-legged machine runs and balances on an open floor. Simulations reveal passively stabilized bounding gait for quadruped-like model.
1984
Quadruped runs with trotting gait using generalization of one-leg algorithms. Data from cat and human found to exhibit symmetries like those used to control running machines.
1985
Planar biped runs with one- and two-legged gaits and changes between gaits.
1986
Planar biped does flips, aerials, and runs at 11.5 mph. Monopod runs using leg with rotary joint and leaf-spring foot.
1987
Quadruped runs with trotting, pacing, and bounding gaits.
1988
Planar biped uses selected footholds and climbs short stairway. Quadruped does rudimentary transitions between running gaits. Reentrant trajectories found for simulated passive dynamic running. Computer simulation shows running in zero-g by bouncing between two floors. Simple physical model of zero-g running demonstrated.
1989
Planar biped jumps through hoop and runs with top speed of 13.1 mph. Simulated planar biped gallops. Hoof added to monopod improves performance of leafspring foot. Three-dimensional biped does simple running.
1990
Planar biped robot walks, gallops, and changes between walking and running. Simulation of passive dynamic running with knees.
1991
Kangaroo-like robot (Uniroo), with articulated leg and tail, takes first steps (hops). Computer simulations of simplified kangaroos and ostriches.
1992
3D biped robot does somersault.
Uniroo runs at 1.8 m/s.
Simulatedquadruped control system adjusts automatically for variations in body mass and leg length.
1993
3D Biped and Uniroo appear with Sean Connery and Wesley Snipes in Rising Sun.
Passive stability achieved for layout somersault in laboratory "doll".
1994
Cockroach simulations runs using kinematic motion data from animal. Stable Groucho running in simulated spherical cockroach (Hexahopper).
Weight-shifting robot rocks with stability.
1995
Spring Turkey, a planar bipedal robot, walks at 0.5 m/s using Series Elastic Actuators and Virtual Model Control.
1996
Planar Quadruped runs with articulated spine.
Agile hexapod simulation walks over rough terrain while balancing a pendulum on its back.
1997
Spring Flamingo, a planar bipedal robot, walks utilizing feet and actuated ankles.

The Leg Laboratory was located at Carnegie-Mellon University from 1980-1986, and at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology from 1987-present.


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