Festo’s BionicAnt bioniCAN

Asian weaver ant workers have been recorded to support one hundred times their own weight while standing upside down on glass. Most people would give a heartfelt “wow” and move on, but the German engineering firm called Festo thought that the skills of ants were too amazing to not make use of. This past month, the company has unveiled their take on the ant form which they have adapted for the manufacturing environment.



These BionicANTs are equipped with highly integrated individual systems to solve common or complex tasks. They operate autonomously, following a strict process by which many individual ants can come together for one job without needing to be programmed for each position beforehand. They utilize highly integrated components that are laser sintered and fixed to the exterior body of the ant, conserving space expertly while also combining the ant’s design and electrical functions. These ants are incredible examples of how we can use the optimized designs of nature. They may be far from programmed perfection, these ants were carefully designed for ease of production, and they seem to be great candidates for the future of factory workers.


“BionicANTs – Cooperative Behaviour Based on Natural Model.”BionicANTs. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Apr. 2015.

The Independent. Independent Digital News and Media, n.d. Web. 07 Apr. 2015.

“Weaver Ant – Oecophylla Smaragdina. Facts, Identification.” AntARK RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Apr. 2015.

Posted in 3D Printing, 3D Technology Blog.

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