Transformers – 5-minute CET lesson

This story contains 14 CET words: vehicles, weapons, electronic devices, vastly, capabilities, task, related, generate, solar cells, store, drill, developing, task, modules, consist.

The coolest thing about Transformers, of course, is that they can take two completely different shapes. Most can be walking human-like robots or working vehicles. Some can instead transform into weapons or electronic devices. A Transformer’s two forms have vastly different strengths and capabilities.

This is completely different from most real robots, which are usually only good at doing one task or a few related tasks. The Mars Exploration Rovers, for example, can do the following:

Generate power with solar cells and store it in batteries
Drive across the land
Take pictures
Drill into rocks
Use machines to record temperatures
Send the recorded data back to Earth using radio

Engineers are developing robots like Transformers. These robots can change their shape to fit the task at hand. But instead of changing from one shape to one other shape, like a walking human-like robot to a vehicle, these robots can take many shapes. They’re much smaller than real Transformers would be; some robot modules are small enough to fit in a person’s hand.

A module is a small, simple robot or piece of a robot. Modular robots are made of lots of these small modules. A modular robot can consist of a few modules or many, depending on the robot’s design and the task it needs to perform. Lots of little robots can join together to create one big one.

From “How Stuff Works” Transformers

Did you see the Transformers movies? Did you like them? Why? Click on “comments” below and write what you think about Transformers and about robots!

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