The realm of quadruped robotics has been a fiercely competitive space, with companies vying to create machines that are more agile, stronger, and smarter. In this landscape, the Unitree B2 stands out as a significant advancement, offering a slew of enhancements over its predecessor, the B1.
Unitree, a Chinese robotics company, has made significant strides in the field, challenging the pioneering work of Boston Dynamics. The B2, their latest industrial robot, is tailored for a variety of applications, including industrial automation, inspection, emergency rescue, security patrolling, and as a tool in robotics education and research.
One of the B2’s most remarkable features is its sophisticated sensing system. The robot is equipped with two high-definition optical cameras, two depth-sensing cameras, and a LiDAR module. This combination enables the B2 to autonomously navigate complex environments, particularly rugged and uneven terrain.
Speed is another area where the B2 excels. Capable of reaching a running speed of 6 meters per second (19.7 feet per second), it significantly outpaces the B1. Unitree touts the B2 as “the fastest known industrial-grade quadruped robot on the market.” Additionally, it boasts impressive mobility, able to jump horizontally up to 1.6 meters (5.2 feet) and step over obstacles as high as 40 cm (15.7 inches).
The B2’s load-bearing capacity is equally noteworthy. While the B1 can carry up to 20 kg (44 lb) when walking, the B2 doubles this capacity, handling loads up to 40 kg (88 lb). When stationary, it can support up to 120 kg (265 lb). This makes it particularly suited for industrial operations where carrying or moving heavy objects is necessary.
Battery life is a crucial factor in robotics, and the B2 marks a significant improvement in this area. It can operate for five hours on a single charge of its 45-Ah/2,250-Wh lithium battery, even when walking without a payload. When carrying a 20 kg load, the B2 maintains over four hours of operational capacity.
Additionally, the B2’s leg joint actuators deliver 170% more torque (360 Nm/266 lb ft) than those of the B1. This enhancement translates to greater flexibility and stability, which are critical in industrial and rescue operations.
Overall, the Unitree B2 marks a substantial step forward in the field of quadruped robots, offering enhanced speed, strength, and sensory capabilities. Its potential applications in various industries underscore the growing importance and versatility of robotic solutions in the modern world.
Watch the Unitree B2 in action as it climbs stairs, resists being kicked over, and demonstrates various other four-legged robotic capabilities in the following video.
Source: Unitree Robotics