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Design and development of biomimetic quadruped robot for behavior studies of rats and mice

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9 Author(s)
Hiroyuki Ishii ; Faculty of Science and Engineering, Waseda University, 2-2 Wakamatsu-cho, Shinjyuku-ku, Tokyo, 162-8480, Japan ; Yuichi Masuda ; Syunsuke Miyagishima ; Shogo Fumino
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This paper presents the design and development of a novel biomimetic quadruped robot for behavior studies of rats and mice. Many studies have been performed using these animals for the purpose of understanding human mind in psychology, pharmacology and brain science. In these fields, several experiments on social interactions have been performed using rats as basic studies of mental disorders or social learning. However, some researchers mention that the experiments on social interactions using animals are poorly-reproducible. Therefore, we consider that reproducibility of these experiments can be improved by using a robotic agent that interacts with an animal subject. Thus, we developed a small quadruped robot WR-2 (Waseda Rat No. 2) that behaves like a real rat. Proportion and DOF arrangement of WR-2 are designed based on those of a mature rat. This robot has four 3-DOF legs, a 2-DOF waist and a 1-DOF neck. A microcontroller and a wireless communication module are implemented on it. A battery is also implemented. Thus, it can walk, rear by limbs and groom its body.

Published in:

2009 Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society

Date of Conference:

3-6 Sept. 2009