Robots making other robots is not a new concept, but robots using spray foam to make other robots is. Researchers at the University of Pennyslvania's ModLab find this robot especially useful in situations where they wish they had another robot. With FoamBot, they can just make one.
Watch as the mother FoamBot nudges the baby robot components into place and douses them in strategic places with spray foam. But what is it making? What will the newly formed robot do? Take a look (Note: It takes a few minutes to get to the real action, but it's worth it):
According to the ModLab website, find the FoamBot especially useful in "Unknown Challenge Missions", where a team "commits robot hardware to the task before knowing exactly what it is that these robots must do." You can see now why having a FoamBot that can make other robot hardware on the go is particularly useful.
The ModLab researchers note that a foam spraying robot has other uses besides making other robots, like making a door stop or blunting sharp edges/hazards, like needles. Videos of both these instances below.
FoamBot makes a doorstop:
FoamBot takes care of potentially bio-hazardous needles: