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Creepy shape-shifting robot changes state from solid to liquid

A shape-shifting robot. The miniature humanoid robot was developed in China and is capable of breaking out of a cage. How? By changing state, from solid to liquid. It passes through bars and immediately reassembles itself by resuming its original form.

Made of magnetic material and capable of conducting electricity. In the future, it could even be used in the human body to deliver drugs or remove objects, as shown by the first experiments published in the journal Matter by an international team led by the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

"Giving robots the ability to go from liquid to solid state gives them greater functionality," says engineer Chengfeng Pan from the Chinese University of Hong Kong in China. The new invention could therefore be useful in areas such as electronic component assembly and even in medical applications.

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