What Happened to NASA's Valkyrie Robot at the DRC Trials, and What's Next
NASA's Valkyrie robot is, arguably, one of the most sophisticated and potentially capable humanoids in existence. The key here is "potentially," because in addition to the very fancy and expensive hardware that was put into the robot at its conception, it has to have the software and controls that enable it to, you know, do stuff. Reliably.
Valkyrie didn't have that great of a time at the DARPA Robotics Challenge Trials, and we never quite figured out why. We certainly noticed that we didn't hear much about the robot after it didn't make the cut last December. So what's up with Val?
At the Robotics Science and Systems conference at UC Berkeley last month, we got an update on Valkyrie, including a description of what went wrong at the DRC and NASA's plans for the robot going forward.