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Harvard Makes Robot Bees

Bio-inspired bees made from stacks of carbon fiber are buzzing right off the production line at Harvard’s Microrobotics Lab.

Why build robot insects? The new mass-production technique is a huge step forward in constructing high-power switches, optical systems and electromechanical devices. Earlier bug prototypes were carefully built by the researchers with glue and by hand, which was too tedious and error-prone.

It took years for the Harvard researchers, a part of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, to develop the U.S. quarter-sized robots with flying capabilities. It was a difficult task to build something made out of so many metals, joints and scaffolding that could move organically.

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