There's now a robotic cat that you can 3D print from home

WANT a pet cat, but without all the responsibility that comes with caring for a living animal?

The answer is simple: just buy a 3D printer, and print yourself a robotic feline companion instead.

A professor based in the USA has built an incredible low-budget robot pet that he describes as "highly manoeuvrable".

Better still, Professor Rongzhong Li has published a detailed guide on how to build the robot cat yourself – if you dare.

He says the project will take around three days to complete, and describes it as "super hard" to make.

But if you're a dab-hand at robotics, you can find a full list of things you'll need to buy, and a guide on how to put them together here.

The cat is powered by a relatively cheap Raspberry Pi computer, which you can pick up on Amazon for around £30.

You'll need to buy some other parts online, but most of the body can be produced using a 3D printer.

What is 3D printing?

Here’s what you need to know…

  • 3D printing is just like regular printing, but you create 3D objects instead of putting ink on paper
  • It involves loading a 3D printer with materials, like plastic
  • A robotic printer arm then builds up thousands of thin layers of the material
  • Over time, this builds a physical product that feels solid
  • This "additive" printing process means you can create very complex designs
  • It's also possible to use a wide range of colours and materials for 3D printing
  • Some scientists are experimenting with using living cells in 3D printers
  • This would allow them to print off human organs
  • This technology could revolutionise organ transplants
  • But 3D printers can also be used to create fun ornaments for your home
  • You can buy very cheap 3D printers on Amazon for as little as £135

He says that although the cat won't be as good as professional-grade robots, he's "just breaking down the barrier from millions of dollars to hundreds".

"I don't expect to send it to battlefield or other challenging realities. I just want to fit this naughty buddy in a clean, smart, and quiet house."

The cat can run for up to 60 minutes, and can be customised with specific body language traits.

The budget cat robot is a cheaper DIY alternative to Boston Dynamics' SpotMini robot dog.

The SpotMini recently hit headlines over its newly-learned ability to open closed doors.

And just a few months ago, Sony resurrected its AIBO robotic pet dog.



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It went on sale in Japan in January for 198,000 yen, which works out at around £1,300 – although there's no UK launch planned.

Would you be interested in a robot pet? Let us know in the comments.

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