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Being an Iron Man-resembling model, the newly designed robot is already garnering a lot of eyeballs. Though it is a primitive design, its movements look very similar to one of the most significant characters in the Marvel comics. Some websites are already calling it a distant cousin of Iron Man.

With one look, you can wish that you own the machine. With the advancement in modern technology and the advent of glamour in almost every walk of life, it has become imperative for engineers to design devices with a wide range of applications and look fabulous. And, as rightly pointed out by James Vincent of The Verge, you can use the common heuristic of Metal Gears Solid to judge whether a mechanical design you are seeing would be an excellent fit for a film or not.

So, now the robotic industry has presented you their latest LEONARDO design, which is undoubtedly looking like an excellent fit for a high-budgeted science fiction film. The robot is a bipedal machine and utilizes arms and legs to walk just like humans. Apart from that, it also exhibits exact robotic movements. Though it is just a machine, you can imagine it’s a wide range of applications, especially in the military industry.

You might have guessed already that LEONARDO is not an actual name. It is an attractive and easy-to-remember characteristic for the machine called “Legs Onboard Drone,” designed and developed at Aerospace Control and Robotic Lab coming under the institution called Caltech. You can remember an earlier version that now almost looks like an identical iteration of this version back in 2019. Now, some of LEONARDO’s features, capabilities, and design attributes have been developed, giving it a more attractive look.

The Integrated Design of the Robot 

Recently the IEEE interviewed the representative of Caltech called Soon-Jo Chung. In the interview, Professor Chung explained that the new LEONARDO robot, which he calls LEO for short, has been recreated from its basic layout. In the new design, people can see increased propellers, legs with lighter metal, and the latest integrated design. The electronics board and the robot’s battery have been combined in a single system in the integrated design.

The physical appearance looks comparatively more minor than humans, but it is manageable compared with walking robots. The height is around 2.5 feet. It is light and weighs about 2.5 KG. The speed has been upgraded from earlier models and is now constant at around three m/s.

The most intriguing fact that people on the internet like is the hybrid design of the robot. LEONARDO can fly as well as walk. It almost looks like a primitive design of the robot called TARS, seen in Christopher Nolan’s epic Interstellar.

The use of the propellers is seen when the robots want to change the mode of travel and are met with tricky maneuvers. Apart from bipedal maneuvers and flying, LEONARDO can also perform movements such as slackline and skateboard. It is pretty impressive when you consider it because those are complex movements and are generally considered outside the remit of a bipedal robot. 

In simple words, the multimodal methodology means that the LEONARDO would be able to move through challenging environments, which other robots would find hard to do. Professor Chung, who has led the project, has explained that LEONARDO application with multimodal features would be its deployment at high-altitude regions. For example, the robot could check whether the tall bridges and high voltage lines are working correctly or not.

He further added that conventionally-created robots would find it difficult to reach the inspection sites in high-altitude locations.


A new bipedal robotic model called LEONARDO has been created. It is lightweight and short in height, and its extra-propeller design makes it elegant in maneuvering through rough environments. In appearance, it looks like a basic design inspired by Marvel’s creation Iron Man.

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