Proto-Transformers Built By Minnesotans?

05.20.11 7 years ago

We’re fairly sure that everybody thirty or younger in a robotics lab got into robots thanks to “Transformers”. Who didn’t want to own a car that was also a spunky sidekick, provided it wasn’t Bumblebee?

Well, thanks to the University of Minnesota, we’re one step closer to more than meets the eye. They’ve built a robot that rolls around on two end wheels, and then, through an elaborate series of motions, stands on its end, pops out some helicopter rotors, and takes off.

It’s pretty crude, which is why we have steampunk Optimus there. For example, it made more sense to build two onboard motor systems than to try to integrate them. But it’s still awesome. Check out video of this proto-Blackout in action after the jump.

[ via the teen sidekicks at Wired ]

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