Friday, 2 August 2013

tick bot

The tick rover drags an insecticide-laced cloth behind it (Photo: VMI Photos by John Rober...

It's summertime in the Northern Hemisphere, and that means the bugs are out – specifically, ticks.
In light of the ensuing infestation, otherwise known as the annual repopulation, three professors at the Virginia Military Institute (VMI) have crossed the business of pest control with the world of robotics by last month testing their robotic "tick rover" to determine its efficiency at removing the blood suckers from the yard.
The robotic exterminator uses biomimicry, with the robot emulating a live host to draw in the ticks as it cruises around the lawn. The rover follows a pair of tubes that are stretched across the lawn, one of which emits carbon-dioxide. Unable to resist the CO2-drenched movement, the ticks attach to a cloth treated with a common insecticide that is dragged behind the rover and quickly meet their demise.