Magnetic soft robots facilitate the battery-free remote control of soft robots. However, parallel control of multiple magnetic robots is challenging due to interference between robots and difficult maneuvers. Here we present the orbital maneuvering of manifold magnetic soft robots. Magneto-induced motion (magnetomotility) that includes the hierarchy of rotation and resultant revolution allows for the independent control of the robot's velocity and orbital radius. The soft robot achieves a speed of 60 body length (BL) s-1, which is approximately 50, 000 times faster with 1/7 the weight of the current lightest legged soft robot. The hierarchical magnetomotility is suitable for versatile locomotion such as stairs and uphill climbing, underwater and above water swimming. Owing to their swimming functionality, a swarm of such soft robots is capable of transportation of cargo. On-demand orbital maneuvering of magnetic soft robots provides a new methodology for concurrent actuation of multiple robots exhibiting collective behaviors.
Conflict of interest statement
The authors declare no competing interests.
A Versatile Soft Crawling Robot with Rapid Locomotion.Soft Robot. 2019 Aug;6(4):455-467. doi: 10.1089/soro.2018.0124. Epub 2019 Mar 18. Soft Robot. 2019. PMID: 30883283
A Fully Three-Dimensional Printed Inchworm-Inspired Soft Robot with Magnetic Actuation.Soft Robot. 2019 Jun;6(3):333-345. doi: 10.1089/soro.2018.0082. Epub 2019 Feb 5. Soft Robot. 2019. PMID: 30720388
Effects of Helix Geometry on Magnetic Guiding of Helical Polymer Composites on a Gastric Cancer Model: A Feasibility Study.Materials (Basel). 2020 Feb 24;13(4):1014. doi: 10.3390/ma13041014. Materials (Basel). 2020. PMID: 32102338 Free PMC article.
A review of recent advancements in soft and flexible robots for medical applications.Int J Med Robot. 2020 Jun;16(3):e2096. doi: 10.1002/rcs.2096. Epub 2020 Mar 5. Int J Med Robot. 2020. PMID: 32091642 Review.
Soft Actuators for Small-Scale Robotics.Adv Mater. 2017 Apr;29(13). doi: 10.1002/adma.201603483. Epub 2016 Dec 29. Adv Mater. 2017. PMID: 28032926 Review.