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Robots mimicking plants

Dr Barbara Mazzolai, an expert in biorobotics and coordinator of the FET projects Plantoid and GrowBot, tells us about creating the first artificial plant tendril that can climb and reverse its movements through hydraulics.

Picture of a plant coling and climbing

GrowBot project

Plants coil around to climb

Plantoid and GrowBot are two FET projects that work towards the next generation of plant-inspired robots. 

Plantoid had a focus on soil exploration and morphological adaptation via a number of rich sensors while GrowBot will develop faster robots that could move by growing while also adapting their bodies to external environments.

In this Horizon article, Dra. Barbara Mazzolai, from the Italian Institute of Technology (Centre of Micro-BioRobotics) and scientific coordinator of Plantoid and GrowBot projects, talks about the these projects and the general idea of plant-inspired robots. Plantoid includes partners from Italy, Spain and Switzerland, while GrowBot's partners come from Italy, Germany, Spain, France and Israel.

Particularly interesting to see is the video on how these robots behave like plants coiling around plants to climb.