split image smallest humanoid robot

A record-breaking feat of engineering has been achieved by four members of the robotics team at Hong Kong’s Diocesan Boys’ School, who have created the world’s smallest humanoid robot

At a height of 141 mm (5.55 in) – shorter than a standard ballpoint pen – it is 11.3 mm (0.44 in) smaller than the previous record holder, made in 2022 by Zain Ahmad Qureshi (Pakistan).

The new record-breaking bot was designed and built by students Aaron Ho Yat Fung, Isaac Zachary To, Justin Wang Tou Duong, and Ngo Hei Leung. It features in the latest episode of our YouTube series Records Weekly, which you can watch below.

To achieve this record, the robot must be able to articulate its shoulders, elbows, knees and hips, in addition to being capable of bipedal movement.

The students designed their robot using computer-aided design (CAD). After determining the robot’s technical specifications and required components, they contracted a factory to produce servo motors in accordance with their needs.

Servo motors, also known as ‘servos’, are electronic devices that rotate and push parts of a machine with precision, allowing the students’ robot to move its legs and arms.

To programme and manipulate the servos, the team procured a 16-channel servo control board. They also bought other hardware components such as screws, nuts, wires, and batteries.

The robot’s acrylic panels and 3D-printed components were all designed and produced in the school’s robotics lab.

Smallest humanoid robot front view

Once they’d collated all the components, the students began assembling their robot.

Starting with the legs, they used eight servos for the feet, knees and hips, and were able to verify that the robot was capable of bipedal movement.

After assembling the arms, using servos to enable shoulder and elbow movement, the team began testing the placement of the battery and control board.

The initial battery unit they’d planned to use proved to be too big and heavy for the robot to hold, so they settled for a smaller 7.4V lithium-ion battery.

smallest humanoid robot rear view

Finally, the control board was screwed onto the robot’s back, allowing it to be controlled via onboard buttons. 

The robot can also be controlled via a mobile app which came with the servo control board, allowing pre-programmed actions to be performed.

Besides doing it to set a world record, the students developed this robot as a “small, low cost, rechargeable and programmable” tool for use in STEAM (science, technology, engineering, the arts, and mathematics) education workshops for ethnic minorities and low-income families.

“We also plan to open-source the design and programming code to further our objectives of promoting STEAM education,” said Isaac.

DBS Robotics team holding GWR certificate

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