Human-like reflexes help robot to balance

This week’s video is brought to you by MIT where researchers have developed a robotic balance-feedback interface derived from the movements of a human.


The human-machine interface (HMI), developed in MIT’s Department of Mechanical Engineering, takes advantage of a human’s split-second reflexes, allowing a humanoid to maintain its balance and complete tasks.

Funded in part by the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, the HMI allows Hermes the robot to carry out a range of momentum-driven tasks – like punching through walls, or swinging a bat – while maintaining its balance.