We have seen robots capable of playing ping pong, football, and tennis, but this is the first time such a high level has been achieved in the badminton court. Researchers at the University of Electronic Science and Technology of China have designed this amazing badminton-playing robot that can cover the court really well and return almost every kind of shot as well.
Just like the robots in other sports, this particular autonomous AI player uses HD cameras to capture stereo images that are then processed by an extremely complicated algorithm to correctly determine the place where the shuttle will eventually drop.
Now unlike other robots, this robot doesn’t have an inbuilt computing system to calculate all that, it actually streams the HD media wirelessly to a nearby computer that then does all the calculations for it. It was probably done to make it much more lightweight and able to respond to the fast movement of the shuttle, but it does make it relatively slower and not able to respond to the faster returns from the opponent.
Now this robot can’t take place in any competitions right now since it uses two rackets instead of one because the angle of each shot makes it difficult for the robot to counter with just one racket. Hopefully, the mechanism will be improved soon enough, and it will be able to play with a single racket. The navigation system is ad advanced as it gets and it is a unique achievement to make a robot that is never out of place on the court and always returns to the optimum position after playing a shot.
There is a small problem with the power generated by the robot since the shuttle released by it hardly make it halfway across the opponent’s court, thus making it very easy for a player with a little ability to wipe the floor with it. But, the robot is very sturdy and it can probably last for hours so if you want an opponent who doesn’t tire and can pick deliveries seamlessly, this Chinese bot is your guy!