Skip to Main Content
In this paper, the development of a robot which has "flesh" made of soft polyurethane foam is presented. In order for a robot to behave in contact with an environment, people and itself, it is necessary to have not only rigid bone but also soft flesh. We developed a small humanoid robot "macra" which has thick soft flesh with distributed tactile sensors. A comparative discussion about possible materials of soft cover is described, and then thermal design was explored. A problem about movability of joints and implementation of tactile sensing was described. In the last part of this paper, several examples of advantages which are derived from soft polyurethane foam exterior parts with distributed three-axis force/torque sensors are shown.