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Thursday, July 28, 2005

Mini robot mimics cockroaches

Insect "extermination" may soon involve mini robots that can befriend and lure cockroaches from their dens.

Scientists in Lausanne, Switzerland, have successfully infiltrated a colony of roaches with a micro robot that has enough intricacies to interact with the world's most resilient insect, according to a report published in the June issue of IEEE Robotics & Automation.

Called InsBot, for "insect-like robot," the mechanical bug mimics the insects' smell and movements to the point that the roaches have accepted it as their own. That feat helps scientists study mixed societies of animals and robots.