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It is well known that animals can travel over rough terrain at speeds much
greater than those possible with wheeled or tracked vehicles. Even a human being,
by "getting down on all fours" if necessary, can travel or climb over terrain which is
impossible for a wheeled or tracked vehicle. Nature, apparently, has no use for the
wheel. It is therefore of considerable interest to learn what machines for land
locomotion can do if they are designed to imitate nature. With this idea in mind, I
started studying linkages and the comparative function of a set of linkages with
certain degrees of freedom arrested. It turned out numerous implementations could
be done so as to bring forth set of linkages so designed as to perform locomotion.


The Jansen's linkage is a planar leg mechanism designed by the kinetic

sculptor Theo Jansen to simulate a smooth walking motion. Jansen has used this
mechanism in a variety of kinetic sculptures which are known as Strandbeesten
(Dutch for "beach beasts"). Jansen's linkage bears artistic as well as a mechanical
merit for its simulation of organic walking motion using a simple rotary input.These
leg mechanisms have applications in mobile robotics and in gait analysis.

The central 'crank' link moves in circles as it is actuated by a rotary actuator such as
an electric motor. All other links and pin joints are actuated and move because of the
motion imparted by the crank. Their positions and orientations are uniquely defined
by specifying the crank angle and hence the mechanism has only one degree of
freedom (1-DoF). The kinematics and dynamics of the Jansen mechanism have been
exhaustively modelled using circle intersection method and bond graphs (Newton-
Euler mechanics). These models can be used to rate the actuator torque and in the
design of the hardware and controller for such a system.

 GI pipe
 bolts, nuts
 dc motor
 crank
 wire

The advantages of this mechanism over a wheel for locomotion is prominent when
we consider the surface over which the system is going to move. On a flat hard
even surface, wheels win hands down, but when we consider an uneven, sandy,
erosive surface, the Theo Jansen Mechanism is much more efficient and smooth.

The ratio for the size of each leg was published by Mr Jansen in the early 90’s.
They were the results of his genetic algorithm to find the most stable combination
that would work.


1. If the mechanism is made as a robot with 4 legs, then due to its legs
trajectory it will be an ALL TERRAIN VEHICLE, it means that the robot
or vehicle will be to move on all types of terrains like Desert, Mountains,
Snow, Rocky, Swampy, etc. It can be used as a military robot with some
modifications on it like Guns, Radar, GPS, etc on it. It can be used as a
surveillance but also where army rangers can’t go. Even Russian Army has
made some prototypes of that and these bots will be included in the army
2. As it is an all-terrain vehicle it can be used for Planetary Exploration like
Mars because it has a maximum payload to weight ratio than any other bot.
Also, it has maximum efficiency for moving as it is inspired by nature (
MOVES LIKE HORSE ), it consumes less power. It is also very much light
and shock absorbing if it is made up of lighter and appropriate material like
carbon fibre etc.