3D Printing Industry ran an interesting article about the CoCoRo robots:
The Collective Cognitive Robots (CoCoRo) are a group of 40 mini-submarine robots that can work together to perform complex tasks. They are based on the concept of “swarm robotics”, which says that a group of simple “little robots” – capable of working together – are able to carry out more complex tasks – and at much lower costs – than a single, very advanced robot.
The CoCoRo project has received funding of 3 million euros over a period of three years and is now is entering its closing phase, with final tests to be held in September 2014. A total of five European universities were involved with different roles.The University of Graz in Austria acts as a coordinator between the University of Stuttgart, the University of York, the University of Brussels and the Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna University of Pisa. Each institution carried out different tasks, but the actual building of the robot prototypes and final use robots was carried out by the Tuscan institute, which is at the forefront of robotics studies with is Department of Biorobotics.
The robots made by the University of Pisa are about 25 cm long and, when it comes to building a limited number of small, relatively complex, objects, regular readers of 3dprinitnginindustry.com will probably recognise that this is a prime application for 3D printing. And the guys at the University of Pisa know it as well, because that is exactly what they used to fulfil the job.
Full article here: http://3dprintingindustry.com/2014/03/25/3d-printed-robots-cocoro/