Legged locomotion of robots and animals
(aka TAM 7960, Mechanics of terrestrial locomotion)

Course home, homework, Syllabus 


This list will grow.  Please make suggestions for additions to this list.

A collisional model of the energetic cost of support work qualitatively explains leg sequencing in walking and galloping, pseudo-elastic leg behavior in running and the walk-to-run transition,  Ruina, A., Bertram, J.E.A., Srinivasan, M.,
Journal of Theoretical Biology, Volume 237, Issue 2, Pages 170-192, November 21, 2005.
(available from Cornell Library or from Ruina's www site)

On the locomotion of Mammals, N. Rashevsky.  
Bull. Math Biophys. 10, 11-23, 1948  (pdf)

Motor code. Matlab code for picking a battery voltage and gear ratio given a motor (ie, given k,c and R), a desired angular velocity and a desired power. This is problem 2 for the homework due Thursday Feb 11, 2010.

Dynamics and stability of a rimless spoked wheel: a simple 2D system with impacts,
Michael J. Coleman, Dynamical Systems, 2010. (paper emailed to class).

Some primitive samples of animation in Matlab: Particle goes in a circle, box rotates and translates, box rotates and translates using homogeneous transform.


News Stories

Some stories that cover material that you should be able to understand or think about better because of this class.

Elephants run or walk?  (See also the article in J of Exp Bio. Relevant papers are by Heglund and Hutchinson.)

Why don't you walk on your toes? (See also the article by Carrier in J. of Exp. Bio.)

Cost of  transport of bees?  4 million miles to a gallon or  .5 mg/km.  But what is the specific cost of transport? [Sugar has about 3 Cal/gm. The mass of a bee is about  100 mg.  So  COT = (.5 mg)*(3 Cal/g)*(4000 J/Cal)/ ((100 mg )*(9.8 m/s^2)*(1 km)) =  6.  Is that impressive?]

Forces in  barefoot running.   (See also Lieberman paper in Nature)

Recycling energy of heelstrike. (See also paper in PLOS by Collins & Kuo. Collins is a Cornell grad.  The idea behind this is directly related the collisional modeling of walking energetics.)