Weird Wheels Move Robot In Four Directions Without Twisting

Perfect parallel parking for one tiny machine

Mecanum Wheel Robot

Mecanum Wheel Robot

Screenshot by author, from YouTube

Wheels, as we know them, could stand a little reinvention. They take fiddling and time to move into parallel spaces, and the whole world would be a better place if wheels could simply pull us sideways without any forward momentum. Fortunately, "mecanum wheels" exist. Here, watch a robot demonstrate them:

Here’s how botmaker MicroRobo describes their creation:

This Mecanum wheel mobile Arduino robotics car can be made to move in any direction and turn by varying the direction and speed of each wheel. Moving all four wheels in the same direction causes forward/backward movement, running left/right sides in opposite directions causes rotation, and running front and rear in opposite directions causes sideways movement. The platform rear wheels are mounted in a particular way, so that the suspension structure ensures that all four wheels can adhere to the ground, even when the ground is uneven.

Watch more of the robot's weird movements below: