Monday, 20 March 2017

Moroccan flic-flac spider (Cebrennus rechenbergi)

Meet the Moroccan flic-flac spider (Cebrennus rechenbergi), a truly unique spider that when provoked or threatened escapes by doubling its normal walking speed using forward or backward flips similar to acrobatic flic-flac movements used by gymnasts.

C. rechenbergi is a species of huntsman spider indigenous to Morocco and can be found in the sand dunes of the Erg Chebbi desert . The spider is named after its discoverer, Ingo Rechenberg, bionics professor at the Technische Universität Berlin. Rechenberg believes he first encountered the spider on a trip to Morocco in 2006, but it was not until 2008 that he collected the first specimen.

The discovery of the Moroccan flic-flac spider has influenced biomimetic robot research, inspiring the development of a biomemetic robot based on the rolling spider locomotion. The design process initially involved at least four generations, with the fourth using six legs in three pairs. Rechenberg named the working machine model Tabbot, based on the Berber word "tabacha", meaning spider.

The model, which is approximately 25 cm in length, can both walk in the sand and turn somersaults to move. Rechenberg envisions possible uses for the robot "in agriculture, on the ocean floor, or even on Mars".

Cebrennus rechenbergi
Moroccan flic-flac spider

- Ralf Simon King (2013). BiLBIQ: A Biologically Inspired Robot with Walking and Rolling Locomotion Biosystems & Biorobotics, 2 : 10.1007/978-3-642-34682-8
- Bröhl, Ilona; Judith Jördens (28 April 2014). "THE MOROCCAN FLIC-FLAC SPIDER: A GYMNAST AMONG THE ARACHNIDS". Senckenberg Gesellschaft für Naturforschung. Retrieved 23 May 2015.

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