How small can you go? Using common locomotion principles (see "How it Works," below) we set out to make a really small HEXBUG that gave the appearance of being smart. How will it react when it encounters an obstacle? What happens if it gets turned over? The first prototypes of the Nano were inspired by the old vibrating football games. More recent examples of vibrating motion are the BEAM Vibrobots, and then the Bristlebots. Thirty some iterations, a few years, and dozens of designs later the Nano was born. To give just a taste of how much development went into this product, we engineered and rapid prototyped over 150 variations of legs alone.
How it works. The motor inside the Nano rotates a counterweight that causes forces up and down. The down force causes the legs to bend and the Nano moves forward. The up force causes the creature to hop lifting the front legs off the ground and allowing the legs to unbend. This up and down movement repeats several hundred times per second causing the Nano to move forward. The Nano creature's ability to flip over by itself is due to the rotating forces caused by the motor and the unique internal and external chassis design (and a little magic).