Actuator, a motor that translates control signals into mechanical movement. The control signals are usually electrical but may, more rarely, be pneumatic or hydraulic. The power supply may likewise be any of these. It is common for electrical control to be used to modulate a high-power pneumatic or hydraulic motor.
Aerobot a robot capable of independent flight on other planets.
Bionics: also known as biomimetics, biognosis, biomimicry, or bionical creativity engineering is the application of biological methods and systems found in nature to the study and design of engineering systems and modern technology.
Emergent behaviour, a complicated resultant behaviour that emerges from the repeated operation of simple underlying behaviours.
End-effector An accessory device or tool specifically designed for attachment to the robot wrist or tool mounting plate to enable the robot to perform its intended task. (Examples may include gripper, spot-weld gun, arc-weld gun, spray- paint gun, or any other application tools.)
Envelope (Space), Maximum The volume of space encompassing the maximum designed movements of all robot parts including the end-effector, workpiece, and attachments.
Explosive ordnance disposal robot A mobile robot designed to assess whether an object contains explosives; some carry detonators that can be deposited at the object and activated after the robot withdraws.
FIRST. or For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology, is an organization founded by inventor Dean Kamen in 1989 in order to develop ways to inspire students in engineering and technology fields.
Forward chaining a process in which events or received data are considered by an entity to intelligently adapt its behavior.
Industrial robot A reprogrammable, multifunctional manipulator designed to move material, parts, tools, or specialized devices through variable programmed motions for the performance of a variety of tasks.
Insect robot A small robot designed to imitate insect behaviors rather than complex human behaviors.
Kalman filter, a mathematical technique to estimate the value of a sensor measurement, from a series of intermittent and noisy values.
Kinematics, the study of motion, as applied to robots. This includes both the design of linkages to perform motion, their power, control and stability; also their planning, such as choosing a sequence of movements to achieve a broader task.
Servo, a motor that moves to and maintains a set position under command, rather than continuously moving.
Servomechanism An automatic device that uses error-sensing negative feedback to correct the performance of a mechanism.
Single Point of Control The ability to operate the robot such that initiation or robot motion from one source of control is possible only from that source and cannot be overridden from another source.
Slow Speed Control A mode of robot motion control where the velocity of the robot is limited to allow persons sufficient time either to withdraw the hazardous motion or stop the robot.
Snake robot A robot component resembling a tentacle or elephant's trunk, where many small actuators are used to allow continuous curved motion of a robot component, with many degrees of freedom. This is usually applied to snake-arm robots, which use this as a flexible manipulator. A rarer application is the snakebot, where the entire robot is mobile and snake-like, so as to gain access through narrow spaces.
Uncanny valley A hypothesized zone in which humanoid robot behavior and appearance begin to approach that of actual humans, but are still missing vital elements, to the point that these mimicked actions or images cause revulsion.
Zero Moment Point. Zero Moment Point is a concept related with dynamics and control of legged locomotion, e.g., for humanoid robots. It specifies the point with respect to which dynamic reaction force at the contact of the foot with the ground does not produce any moment, i.e. the point where total inertia force equals 0 (zero).