History, fantasy, tradition, myth, illusion, sci-fi, virtual reality, electronics, computer simulation and then there is science that in Germany combined all of this and created the first giant fully functional Dragon Robot.
Once upon a time there were the legends of dragons and knights, legends that have been told for centuries to the next generations until our days. And there is a town in Germany (Furth im Wald) where people like to tell the tale of a dragon invading the city and a giant army of brave knights starting a war against the rebelling Bohemians. And amid blood and murder the power of the evil awoke a much more dangerous and fearful creature: a dragon.
But this is just a tale and the city remembers it in the annual Drachenstich festival (spearing the dragon), where the monster has been lanced every year. But now, thanks to science and new technology, the mythical dragon became a reality: a massive robot that meets engineering and fantasy.
The work has been directed by Zollner Elektronik AG and more than 20 companies and institutions joined the project: creative designer Sikander Goldau, Hollywood specialists, mechatronics and metal construction companies, Audi and The German Aerospace Centre (“Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt“).
Let’s see some figures to show how impressive this robot is:
It’s name is “Tradinno” and it’s the world’s largest four-legged walking robot. It’s remote-controlled, it can operates outdoor and has dimensions never seen before. “Tradinno” is 15.5m (50.9 feet) long, 3.8m (12.5m feet) wide and 4.5m (14.8 feet) high. It weighs 11.0 t (12.1 short tons) and is powered by a 2.0 litre turbo diesel with 103 kW (140 PS, 138 HP). Like any “reputable” dragon, “Tradinno” has wings (with a 14 metres span) and is filled with 80 litres of stage blood…and of course, it breathes fire.
If you want to know even more:
“Tradinno” has both hydraulic and electronic components and nine separate controllers, each containing two TI processors and a Fujitsu microcontroller. 238 separate sensors allow the dragon to determine the environment around it. Thanks to that, “Tradinno” can use four legs with 7 degrees of freedom each, making the robot moves so impressively realistic.
Next time you see a medieval fantasy film, remember that in Germany it’s now almost a reality and not just a tale.