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[DPRG] RE: legged vs. wheeled robot efficiencies

Subject: [DPRG] RE: legged vs. wheeled robot efficiencies
From: Clay Timmons ctimmons at cadence.com
Date: Thu Sep 25 11:05:01 CDT 2003

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Chuck McManis [mailto:cmcmanis at mcmanis.com]

> Compare walking a mile of sandy beach to riding a bicycle down that mile.
> Energy expenditure was higher on the bike. Situation reverses on hard
> pavement. Sanjay's point (I think) and a good one was that walking has a
> predictable efficiency over a wide range of surfaces, great for predicting
> things like energy budgets.

Scientific American once had an article on locomotion efficiency.  They had a graph of many types of locomotion.   The bicycle (I assume hard surface)
was the most efficient by far.  The helicopter was the worst.  Don't remember if they had human walking or not, it was mostly machine locomotion.

In the animal kingdom I've read seagulls are about the most efficient.  They
can go for something like 2000 miles over open ocean on a small tank (stomach) (perhaps 1/2oz) of fuel.   Of course they can cheat by using winds, and thermal currents but hey nature allows cheating any way you can.   


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