Stay up to date with the latest news from the Dynamic Legged Systems lab. This page contains updates regarding publications related to DLS lab, DLS lab papers, new videos, events and other interesting information related to the DLS lab.

For an overview of all instances where DLS lab or one of its robots was mentioned in newspapers, youtube channels, national television, please visit this media link. If still available a link to the actual source is included.



PhD call

19 MAY 2020: Open PhD positions in the DLS lab.

All PhD positions at IIT are performed under the double affiliation between IIT and the University of Genova (UniGE).

Every year, the Dynamic Legged Systems lab has open PhD positions in the PhD Program Bioengineering and Robotics (Curriculum: Advanced and Humanoid Robotics (Code 8174)) of the Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (IIT), a research institute that uses English as main language. All the positions are fully funded.

For 2020 there's three different PhD positions available at the DLS lab. One related to computer vision for legged robots, one related to optimization-based planning for legged robots and one related to machine learning for quadruped motion generation. The deadline for application is: JUNE 15TH, 2020 NOON, ITALY (CEST). Click "read more" to find out all about these open positions.

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MPC Octavio

17 APR 2020: MPC-based Controller with Terrain Insight for Dynamic Legged Locomotion.

Authors: Octavio Villarreal, Victor Barasuol, Patrick M. Wensing, Darwin G. Caldwell and Claudio Semini.

In this work we present a novel control strategy for dynamic legged locomotion in complex scenarios, that considers information about the morphology of the terrain in contexts when only on-board mapping and computation are available. The strategy is built on top of two main elements: first a contact sequence task that provides safe foothold locations based on a convolutional neural network to perform fast and continuous evaluation of the terrain in search of safe foothold locations; then a model predictive controller that considers the foothold locations given by the contact sequence task to optimize target ground reaction forces.

Graduation Octavio

14 FEB 2020: Graduation of Dr. Octavio Villarreal Magaña

Congratulations to Octavio who defended his thesis on “Bridging Vision and Dynamic Legged Locomotion”! Congrats also to his main supervisor Victor Barasuol for a job very well done and also to our collaborator Patrick Wensing!

A&T Torino

12 FEB 2020 - 14 FEB 2020: Visit DLS lab at A&T Torino

Salvatore Casella will represent the DLS lab at the Automation and Testing conference in Torino on 13th and 14th of February at Stand C01 C03. HyQ2Max is part of IIT's bigger stand that represents also Advanced Robotics.
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New HyQReal Robot with Moog Actuation including the hydraulic pump units, smart manifolds, fluid rotary unions and Integrated Servo Actuators (ISA)

MAY 2019: Moog and IIT-Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia Test New Quadruped Robot HyQReal by Pulling Three-Ton-Airplane

Researchers from Moog and IIT-Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia completed the design, assembly and testing of the new version of the hydraulic quadruped robot HyQ, called HyQReal. Its capabilities were demonstrated by pulling an airplane with a 3,300 kg (7,275 lb) weight for more than 10 meters (394 in). HyQReal is compact at 1.33 m (52 in) in length, standing 90 cm (35 in), and weighing 130 kg (287 lb), even with hydraulic infrastructure and batteries onboard. The robot has customized rubber feet for high traction on the ground and is protected by an aluminium roll cage and a skin made of Kevlar, glass fiber and plastic.

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Dailymail - HyQReal pulling plane

MAY 2019: HyQReal - The terrifying moment a robot dog pulls a 3-ton AIRPLANE with ease across more than 30 feet

A surprising new video shows off just how advanced the four-legged droids have become, as a 'HyQReal' robo-dog can be seen dragging an airplane that weighs a whopping 3 tons across the Genova Airport in Italy.

HyQReal was created by researchers at the Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (IIT) as a device designed to support humans in emergency situations.

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Techcrunch - You can do it, robot! Watch the beefy, 4-legged HyQReal pull a plane

MAY 2019: TechCrunch - You can do it, robot! Watch the beefy, 4-legged HyQReal pull a plane

It’s not really clear just yet exactly what all these powerful, agile quadrupedal robots people are working on are going to do, exactly, but even so, it never gets old watching them do their thing. The latest is an Italian model called HyQReal, which demonstrates its aspiration to winning strongman competitions, among other things, by pulling an airplane behind it.

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Reuters - HyQReal pulling plane

MAY 2019: HyQReal - Four-legged robot pulls plane

Reuters was one of the first big media to pick up the new of the HyQReal robot release. The robot was publicly announced in a video at the airport of Genoa in which it shows of its strength by pulling a 3.3 ton weighing small passenger airplane. Click the "video" link below for the footage

Le Iene and HyQ

FEB 2019: Le Iene - Robot: Alice, che cammina per la prima volta, e il cucciolo di umanoide

The Iene, the popular Italian TV show has covered a news item on IIT as well as part of a bigger coverage on robots. Matteo viviani, who hosts the show pays a visit to a number of IIT labs including the Dynamic Legged Systems lab where he has a short interview with MDr. Michele Focchi and gets a live demonstration of HyQ. To be seen from 10:31 onwards, note that the full video is in Italian

Futuro 24

FEB 2019: frontiere della robotica

In a general news item about the frontier of robotics HyQ is featured amongst other IIT technologies. The full video is almost 15 minutes long, HyQ is featured at 04:11 including interviews of Dr. Victor Barasuol. Note that the full video is in Italian.

HyQ vision based adaptation

OCT 2018: HyQ Steps Across Gaps Despite Getting Yanked Around

If your robotics lab has a quadruped, it’s become almost a requirement that you post a video of the robot not falling over when walking across some kind of particularly challenging surface.

At the Italian Institute of Technology, roboticists have used a convolutional neural network to reduce the time that it takes for the HyQ quadruped to plan its foot placement by several orders of magnitude, and it can now make dynamic adaptations, allowing it to withstand an extra helping of abuse from its human programmers.

Click this video link to watch the video that belongs to the article or click the "more info" button below to read the article

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TGR Leonardo

JAN 2017: HyQ2Max on national TV - TGR Leonardo

Featuring an interview with Michele Focchi, HyQ2Max is shown on national televison. The robot can be seen demonstrating self-righting after a fall. This is a very important feature for robots in the real world as this means they are more autonmous and don't require human intervention after falling down or rolling over.

The item about HyQ2Max starts at 03:59 and can be seen by clicking the video button below.


HyQ on Euronews

SEP 2016: Euronews on HyQ - the four-legged robot for disaster zones

After a visit from the associated press, HyQ and HyQ2Max were featured in Euronews among other media

As Italy is slowly recovering from a series of deadly earthquakes, researchers at the Italian Institute of Technology of Genoa are developing a new generation of robots to work in disaster zones. The key to the four-legged robot, called HyQ, an acronym for “Hydraulic Quadruped”, is its mobility. It can trot, walk on rocks, climb stairs, walk backwards and keep itself upright if it gets knocked down.


HyQCentaur one-armed hyq robot can knock obstacles out of its way

DEC 2015: HyQCentaur - One-Armed HyQ Robot Can Knock Obstacles Out of Its Way

Quadruped robots could soon be an important tool for replacing humans in dangerous situations. The maneuverability of advanced four-legged robots means they can navigate uneven terrain and could aid rescue efforts and disaster recovery scenarios.

No matter how agile a legged robot is, however, their role has traditionally been limited to load carrying or observation tasks.

A team of robotics engineers from the Italian Institute of Technology (IIT) in Genoa have designed a robotic arm that they’ve attached to one of their flagship HyQ quadruped robots in order to give it manipulation capabilities.

This article was also published in the New York Times!

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HyQ2Max the robot you can't keep down

DEC 2015: HyQ2Max - The Robot you Can't Keep Down

Robots that can venture into disaster zones in place of humans need to be tough enough to cope in hazardous environments. So far, the only viable robots are wheeled or tracked vehicles but these cannot cope with many terrains and situations.

Legged robots that mimic the robustness and versatility of animals could be a solution. But designing quadruped automatons that are dynamic enough to cope with any scenario has proved problematic.

Step forward HyQ2Max - the latest and most powerful four-legged robot to come out of the Italian Institute of Technology (IIT).

This article was also published in the New York Times!

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HyQ disaster ready

NOV 2015: Getting HyQ the robot 'disaster ready'

Robotics engineers are developing algorithms to make HyQ, a quadruped robot, into a useful tool in disaster missions.

Robotics engineers in Switzerland and Italy are developing algorithms that they hope will make a dog robot robust enough for use in search and rescue missions and environmental disasters that are too dangerous to employ humans.

The HyQ quadruped robot was developed and built by Claudio Semini, of the Italian Institute of Technology (IIT) in Genoa, who completed it in 2010. A copy of the robot was built in 2012 for ETH Zurich Professor Jonas Buchli’s laboratory, part funded by the National Science Foundation. Buchli’s team is developing algorithms to increase the robot’s viability.

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HyQ2Max in IEEE Video Friday

MAY 2015: HyQ2Max featured in IEEE Video Friday

Before the actual release of the latest quadruped from DLS lab a teaser video was released. Headlining IEEE's Video Friday and captioned: Consider yourself teased. We’ve heard that HyQ2Max (this is the next generation of IIT’s HyQ quadruped) is going to make a full appearance within the next few weeks, and we’ll have a full article when it does.

Click the button below to go directly to the video!


HyQ using Moog mini servo valves

JAN 2015: Hydraulic Quadruped Uses Mini Servovalves

HyQ, the hydraulically actuated quadruped, is a responsive, running, jumping robot designed by researchers at the Italian Institute for Technology. Hydraulic cylinders at the leg joints generate torque for movement and produce high load-bearing capability and impact resilience. A broad bandwidth for hydraulic actuation is provided by high-performance, compact E024-LA mini servo valves supplied by Moog Industrial Group.
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HyQ Quadruped Robot Is Back With Even More Tricks

MAR 2014: HyQ Quadruped Robot Is Back With Even More Tricks

HyQ, a quadruped robot created by the Italian Institute of Technology, already knew how to walk, trot, and kick. Last year, it learned how to quickly react to avoid falls when stepping on an obstacle. Now HyQ is back with even more tricks.
Check out the article on the IEEE website by clicking here. Click the button below to go directly to the video displaying why HyQ is probably the most versatile robot in the world.

HyQ on gadget show

FEB 2014: The Gadget Show visits IIT

The gadget show of Channel 5 has paid a visit to IIT. Not only did they do an item on HyQ, they have also visited iCUB and Coman. Not interested in iCUB and Coman? Skip to 03:43 of the video to see HyQ in action.

hyq learns to avoid stumbles on IEEE

JUL 2013: HyQ Quadruped Robot Learns to Avoid Stumbles, Visits London

Last year, IEEE wrote about HyQ, a quadruped robot designed for rough terrain missions. Created by a team at the Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (IIT), HyQ was learning to walk and trot, and was also able to jump and even kick things. The robot uses hydraulic actuators, which allow it to move quickly and nimbly, with an eerie animal-like quality. Now HyQ has learned another important skill in life: how not to fall on its face when it stumbles on an obstacle.
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HyQ in Russian news

JUL 2012: HyQ featured in Russian News: Steel Rescue Assistants

Russian reporters came to IIT in Genova to see with their own eyes how HyQ functions. In this video Darwin Caldwell and Claudio Semini talk about HyQ. Click the "video" button to watch the clip. Note that the video is in Russian.


MAY 2012: HyQ featured in IEEE blog: Italian Quadruped Robot Goes for a Walk

Last week, researchers from the Italian Institute of Technology took their quadruped robot HyQ for a test run outside the lab for the first time. The researchers were anxious to try some new tricks HyQ has learned, including the ability to trot over obstacles without falling. The robot is still a strange headless creature, and though a sensor head is in the works, this quadruped might get even weirder with a new hardware addition: arms. Yes, arms.
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OCT 2011: HyQ featured in IEEE blog: Quadruped Robot From Italy Can Trot, Kick

HyQs first appearance in IEEE. The article focuses on the first version of the hydraulically actuated robot, HyQ, capable of trotting and moving like a real animal. The article features a nice video of the robot and a single leg showing all sorts of versatile and dynamic motions. It's an interesting read, click the "more info" button to visit this article on the IEEE website.
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HyQ in espr3ssioni

MAY 2011: HyQ featured in espr3ssioni and Agoravox

As part of a bigger coverage on IIT triggered by research that incorrectly stated that the Italian Institute of Technology was a waste of money and did not produce enough papers Advanced Robotics received a visit from a journalist of Espr3ssioni. HyQ receeived good coverage in the second part of this coverage. This article was later also published by Agoravox. Click the "more info" button to visit the article on their website.
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