A Cute Chinese Robot Has Set a New Walking Distance Record on a Single Charge

It traveled more than twice the distance of the previous record holder.

Nov 8 2015, 7:06pm

There's something truly endearing about the rhythmic, lanky gait of Walker No. 1, a robot that looks like WALL-E's gangly cousin and just made The Guinness Book of World Records for Longest Distance Covered By a Quadruped Robot.

Xingzhe (Walker) No. 1 walked a total of 83.28 miles on a single charge, circling an indoor track 1,405 times over a period of 54 hours and 34 minutes. It beat the pants off the previous record-holder, a bot from Cornell that covered 40.5 miles in 2011, though Walker No. 1 was only slightly faster than the American robot (1.18 times the speed).

Walker No. 1 was developed at the College of Automation of Chongqing University of Posts and Telecommunications to study electrical efficiency as well as the reliability and durability of robots performing in remotely-controlled missions. Despite traveling more than twice the distance of Cornell's Ranger Robot, Walker No. 1 only used 0.8 kilowatt-hours of energy to the Ranger's 0.5, according to Xinhua.

Of course, the massive difference between the robots' performances can be chalked up partly to the progress robotics has made in just the past four years. Likely, Guinness will have to update its files on robotics records more than a few times.