University of Cambridge > > Bio-Inspired Robotics Lab (BIRL) Seminar Series > Robotic Approaches in Locomotor Biology

Robotic Approaches in Locomotor Biology

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  • UserDr William Seller (University of Manchester)
  • ClockFriday 06 November 2015, 16:00-17:00
  • HouseCUED, LR10.

If you have a question about this talk, please contact Josie Hughes.

Many robotics projects borrow aspects of animal locomotion in their design. However information flow the other way is rather less common and this means that much of the engineering rigor and the novel approaches from the robotics community do not easily find their way into animal locomotor research. However one area where robotics ideas have been embraced with some enthusiasm is palaeontology where they can be used to try and accurately reconstruct the locomotor capabilities of fossil animals. This talk will concentrate on what we can learn from studying the mechanics of fossil organisms using evolutionary robotic simulation techniques running on high performance computers. It will demonstrate the way early humans moved and what this tells us about the origins of moderns humans. Similarly, it will discuss how fast and how heavy the largest dinosaurs were and what this means about the way they lived and moved. However there are limitations to what can currently be achieved and hopefully this can be addressed in future with further cross-disciplinary interaction.

Biography Bill Sellers is a Reader in Integrative Vertebrate Biology at the University of Manchester. He was initially trained as a zoologist in Cambridge and was awarded his PhD on primate locomotion in Liverpool before working at various institutions including the Universities of Edinburgh and Loughborough. His research interests include the use of high performance computing simulations to reconstruct the locomotor capabilities of extinct animals using evolutionary robotics techniques. Pursuing this he excavates dinosaur fossils in North America and films animals in various locations around the world in both field and laboratory settings.

This talk is part of the Bio-Inspired Robotics Lab (BIRL) Seminar Series series.

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