GIANT FREAKIN’ ROBOTS part 11: Ferrofluid forever

robot 11 sm

Lumin met Skip and Bo in a small conference room on the factory’s second floor to start work on her newly devised control scheme for their robot. The engineers spent hours hunched around a table stacked with folders, drafting devices and energy drink cans as they labored to make the design come to fruition.

“I gotta tell you, Lumin, this is pretty damn good. This could work,” said Skip, leaning back in his chair with a grin.

“I don’t know, Lumin. You have a lot of good ideas here but several seem to be butting heads with each other. If you can’t adequately explain how this control scheme actually works–well–maybe we should consider going back to mine,” said Bo, shuffling sketches.

Skip’s brow furrowed. “It’s all here, Bo! If you can’t manage to swallow your pride maybe you should–”

“It’s alright,” interrupted Lumin as she took down her hair and wiped her brow. “One more time: I will be outfitted with a protective switch suit covered in accelerometers and a helmet equipped with a pair of eye-tracking goggles and an augmented reality display that coverts stereoscopic video footage into a real-time 3D. Once suited up I’ll be lowered into Biz’s central chamber–the control bell. Situated near his core, the bell is essentially a large electromagnetic vat containing several hundred gallons of ferrofluid.”

“Ferrofluids are sensitive to magnetic forces–they’re full of microscopic iron particles that can be manipulated with electro magnets,” added Skip.

“I know what a ferrofluid is, Skip,” said Bo.

“Then quit acting stupid!” barked Skip. “We’ve been sitting here for two hours and you’re acting like you just walked into the room!”

“Stop,” ordered Lumin. “Enough! As I was saying…I will be completely submerged into a large vat of ferrofluid which will be carefully formulated to support my body weight, effectively keeping me in a zero gravity environment. The accelerometers attached to my limbs will translate one-to-one movements to Biz’s actuators. The weight of the fluid surrounding me will limit my mobility just enough to prevent excessive kenetic force from causing undo strain on Biz’s limbs. Still with me?”

“Yes,” said Bo with a groan, “Go on.”

Lumin nodded. “The magnetized tank will have the ability to be calibrated on the fly, allowing me to thicken or thin the ferrofluid if I deem any adjustments are needed. At the same time, gyroscopic sensors will detect any damage Biz sustains in combat and automatically thicken the ferrofluid in the corresponding section of the control bell most affected by the impact, cushioning any potential blow to my body.”

Bo sighed. “Alright, fine. I admit it’s better–way better–than mine. Your a genius, Lumin.”

“I agree,” said Skip. “All you’ll really have to worry about is drowning in an opaque mass of toxic, black syrup.” said Skip.

“Luckily, I’ve scuba dived multiple times in my life, but…fuck you, Skip.”

Skip laughed. “Okay, I deserved that.”

“Alright,” said Lumin, “I’ve laid it out in front of you two; it’s time for you jokers to make it work.”

Part 12: Shuffle Pigs unite!

What is this? I started this “serial” as a way to bring some fun and immediacy to my writing routine. Each chapter is written, edited and posted in a single day (I will do some additional editing if I find a glaring mistake). Chapters are released on an irregular basis.

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