IEEE Int. Conf. on Advanced Robotics, July 2005, Seattle, WA.

This research was conducted at the Fordham University Robotics and Computer Vision Lab. For more information about graduate programs in Computer Science, see, and the Fordham University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, see


Computer Engineering | Robotics


In this paper we presented a novel, agile robot mechanism, which we call a rotopod, which combines aspects of wheeled and legged locomotion. A general description of how a tripedal rotopod can be made to step, rotating the mechanism about one leg, and moving the center of the mechanism, is presented. The concept of a gait for this mechanism is defined, and is used to show how extremely agile the mechanism can be. Specific resistance is employed as a way to explore the relative efficiency of this mechanism versus a wheel. Finally, we describe our first prototype rotopod and report on experiments conducted to characterize stepping.

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