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Biohybrid robot made from flour and oats could act as a biodegradable vector for reforestation

Date: 15.5.2024 

Researchers at Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (IIT-Italian Institute of Technology) in collaboration with the University of Freiburg have developed a biohybrid robot, which consists of a flour-based capsule created using 3D microfabrication techniques, and two natural appendages from oat fruit capable of moving in response to air humidity.

Kredit: Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia-University of Freiburg.Named HybriBot, this new device can accommodate natural seeds from different plants, serving as a biodegradable vector for reforestation. The research group has already conducted positive tests with tomato, chicory, and willow herb seeds, the latter being one of bees' favorite flowers, from which the plants germinated. A patent application has been filed for the invention.

The invention represents a further solution that the Bioinspired Soft Robotics laboratory at the IIT, a pioneer in robotics inspired by living organisms, particularly plants, has identified to address problems related to climate change, such as the need for reforestation of large areas and the protection of biodiversity.

The use of biodegradable materials of plant origin makes HybriBot a low environmental impact device; it is also harmless in the event that an animal might ingest it.

Zdroj obrázku: Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia-University of Freiburg.




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