Robotic ants

Robotic ants

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Caption: Robotic ants surrounding real ants (Dinoponera gigantea) during an experiment. These mobile micro-robots, nicknamed 'Alice', were designed by researcher Gilles Caprari at the Ecole Polytechnique Federal de Lausanne (EPFL), in Switzerland. 'Alice' robots are used in experiments to examine the interactions between robot ants and live ants. Here, the robots have herded the ants into a group. This research aims to better understand the social behaviour of real ants. The findings may be applied to communication networks and transport organisation. D. gigantea ants can reach 3 centimetres in length. The species is native to South America.

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