During a two year Masters program at MIT, I worked on a number of projects outside my thesis, the most notable is this large Robotic Chandelier. I built one of the arms as a proof of concept, which is shown below along with a simulation of the robot’s movement.
I made the initial prototype out of wood, but in the future I would probably look into composites and 3d printed components for weight reduction as shown in the rendering above. The goal of the project was to make a chandelier that could change shape very slowly over time and perhaps cast different light on the environment it is in.
Each arm of the chandelier can extend to roughly 6 feet, making this a chandelier for large spaces. The arms extend out and sweep down, which can be seen in the simulation below. Since each arm is independently controlled, it is possible for the shape of the chandelier to be somewhat varied.
Building robot chandeliers is not my passion in life, but as a roboticist, I’m always looking for areas for robotics technology to exist where is didn’t before. Military robotics and industrial automation are two areas, but from my perspective there are many others and spending some time asking these questions is valuable.