Roboticists at Keio University in Tokyo are experimenting with machines that simulate the movement of cilia, the tiny hairs that line cellular surfaces and help microorganisms get around. Are we witnessing the birth of giant robotic germs? Short answer: yes.
This movement is created by using 4 biometal rods. Biometal is a thin fiber actuator that moves like muscle when electricity flows through it, and is characterized by lifelike flexible movement. In this device, after electrostatic capacitor sensors attached to the ends of the rods detect their position, the biometal rods are made to move based on calculations from a PC.