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Robot Vacuum Concept is Powered by Dirt

Sometime in the future, we may be able to let robot vacuum cleaners loose in our houses, and they can not only clean the floors, but power themselves by the dirt they suck up.

A concept device from designer Elliot Cohen, called Limbo, is free of power cords and heavy batteries, and its unique design enables it to crawl up and down stairs and over other objects.

To celebrate their 25th anniversary, cleaning products company Casabella presented the design for Limbo at the 2013 International Housewares Show 2013 in Chicago, and while it’s not a working prototype, the concept itself is based on current working technology.

The Limbo robot is designed to be powered by microbial electrolysis, which would generate energy from the microbes in the dust and dirt sucked into the device.

The device features sensors, lights, and a camera on the front, and the unique honeycombed wheels are capable of expanding or retracting, as well as lowering or raising the Limbo. No word yet on whether this design concept will be pursued, but based on the popularity of the Roomba, if it comes on the market eventually, it’s bound to be adopted pretty quickly.

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