Boston Dynamics are the Google-owned robotics team who have terrified the world with Spot, the robot dog. The company have been committed to changing what the world knows about robotics in terms of mobility, agility, dexterity and speed within robotics. Many people believe that they’ve done that with their new robot, Handle.
Handle is a 1.98m robot that can travel at a top speed of 14km/h. Handle can also carry loads of up to 50kgs, which is ideal for a warehouse environment. The Boston Dynamics team give a detailed explanation of Handle’s superior constitution.
“Handle uses many of the same dynamics, balance and mobile manipulation principles found in the quadruped and biped robots we build,” Boston Dynamics said, “but with only about 10 actuated joints, it is significantly less complex. Wheels are efficient on flat surfaces while legs can go almost anywhere. By combining wheels and legs, Handle can have the best of both worlds.”
Handle is currently being used for research and design purposes, and is already creating concerns. Google’s parent company Alphabet are looking to sell Boston Dynamics due to tensions within the company. Many within Google are worried that the technology company doesn’t fit with the corporate structure of Google. After a YouTube video of Handle was shared on the Boston Dynamics website, Google sought to distance themselves from the company. Google said that the technology being developed was ‘terrifying’.
The video below gives an in depth look at just how capable Handle is.