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This paper introduces a novel mobile robot design concept aimed at exploration of subterranean spaces. The key innovation is the combination of highly maneuverable-body elements with wheel/leg elements (ldquowhegsrdquo). This combination offers performance not possible with conventional ldquomonolithicrdquo wheeled or tracked mobile robots, or with current robot snakes. The paper covers two design iterations of the concept, concentrating on describing the overall design process and results from initial tests.
Date of Conference: 14-17 April 2009