CLASH, the Climbing Autonomous Sprawled Hexapod is a significant design evolution from DASH. With a mass of only 15 g and measuring 10 cm long, CLASH is able to climb loose vertical cloth at 15 cm/s and cloth draped over rigid surfaces at 24 cm/s.

Running on horizontal surfaces, DASH was very capable. However, DASH had very significant intrinsic body dynamics that made it difficult to climb vertical surfaces. In a complete overhaul, CLASH improves the body dynamics by changing the plane of actuation in the robot while maintaining the same alternating tripod gait. It is built using the same Smart Composite Manufacturing process as DASH which lends it inherent strength and robustness if it does fall off walls.



DASH, the Dynamic Autonomous Sprawled Hexapod, is a robot I designed (with some help from the people in our lab) to take advantage of the scaled Smart Composite Microstructures, or SCM, manufacturing technology. Using this folding process, we can keep DASH light (it has less than the mass of three US quarters) and yet very physically robust.

DASH can run forward using a single DC motor which drives all six legs using the kinematic constraints built into the body. Turning is achieved by warping the frame of DASH to bias the leg strokes forward on one side and backward on the opposite side. The low mass and high power-to-weight ratio made possible by composite manufacturing process and the design itself give it high speed, the ability to climb over (relatively) tall obstacles, and the ability to survive falls from arbitrary heights. You can read more about it in our recent publication or find out more in the video.

DASH is still in its infancy, so look for more results involving DASH in the future.