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Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview. Our mission is to create a sanctuary online for serious thinking.

No ads, no paywall, no clickbait – just thought-provoking ideas from the world’s leading thinkers, free to all. But we can’t do it without you.

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Robot origami

3 minutes

Could these printable, self-assembling origami robots transform medicine?

At the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), researchers make origami robots, just a centimetre long and a third of a gram in weight, that could offer a glimpse into what the future of robotics holds: small, versatile and environmentally friendly devices. After being printed, each one of these origami robots self-assembles, navigates around obstacles on land and in water, and ultimately dissolves into liquid, making them the first robotic devices to complete ‘a full lifecycle from birth to death’. The robots’ inventors hope they could someday be used as a controllable drug capsule or to help execute surgeries.

Producer: Melanie Gonick

Website: MIT Media Lab

Support Aeon

Ideas can change the world

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview.

But we can’t do it without you.

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview. Our mission is to create a sanctuary online for serious thinking.

No ads, no paywall, no clickbait – just thought-provoking ideas from the world’s leading thinkers, free to all. But we can’t do it without you.

Become a Friend for $5 a month or Make a one-off donation

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