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Index > News Blog > News > ScienceDaily: New Software Eases Analysis of Insect in Motion

ScienceDaily: New Software Eases Analysis of Insect in Motion

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Cockroaches can skitter through a crowded under-the-sink cabinet, eluding capture or worse, making the insects a model for rescue robots that would creep through the debris of disaster in search of survivors.

But learning how they use all six legs at the same time to walk, run and turn has been a difficult and time-consuming task. Until now.

Using a pair of high-speed cameras and a custom computer program, researchers at Case Western Reserve University are able to simultaneously extract three-dimensional movement of a cockroach's 26 leg joints. They report their findings in the online journal PLoS ONE.

"Each leg does something a little different but in concert," said John Bender, a postdoctoral research associate in the department of biology and lead author of the study. A cockroach doesn't inch ahead on the push of one leg. So, to understand just one step requires a synchronous picture of what each joint in each leg is doing as the insect propels forward.

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