Video: This robot plays the vibraphone

Posted by Lydia Leavitt

The one-man band has gone high tech with the introduction of the Vibratron. Yes, this bad boy can pretty much do the job of a multiple percussion players with its unique ability to play multiple vibraphone keys at the same time.

Don’t know what a vibraphone is? It’s an instrument similar to the xylophone or glockenspiel that uses aluminum bars to produce a vibrato sound.

The Vibratron was created by the Carnegie Mellon Robotics Club after they received a $1,000 grant and a donated vibraphone.

The students arranged the vibraphone’s keys in a circular manner so the robot could drop its steel ball bearings onto particular keys to create pure musical amazement.

The robot has three main systems: one that drops the balls onto each key, another that collects the balls, and the robot’s body.

Think of it like one of those one-man bands where the musician plays the drum with his left hand, a trumpet with his right hand, and the symbols between his legs. In laymen’s terms, the Vibratron is the coolest thing ever.

The robot also uses an Archimedes screw to bring balls to the top. You know, one of those machines that rotates to bring water from a low-lying ditch to the surface. (Thank you Wikipedia!)

But the Vibratron isn’t the end of the Robotics Club evil plan of musical domination. Instead, they hope to take over the world with the RobOrchestra, an all robot band.

Awe-some.

(Via PC World)