The prototype robot, developed at Caltech, served as a bat
Professionals working in the California Institute of technology have built a flying robot, the flight principle of which is borrowed from the bat.
Compared to insects and birds, bats do more complex movements that involve a large number of joints. Therefore, the playback of the flight of a bat was considered a difficult task robotics. To solve it, researchers have opted to simplify the design of the robot has a total of nine joints, while in the wings of the animal over forty.
The possibility of independent control of each wing allows the robot to maneuver available with other designs. At the same time, a flight using flapping wings is quieter and more efficient in terms of energy cost compared to the flight design with fixed wing (airplane) or rotary wing (helicopter). However, the practical application development is still far: the need to reduce the weight of the robot does not allow to install the power source of large capacity, so time is very limited.
Source: California Institute of technology