YouTube can be a treasure trove of really intriguing and informative videos if you know where to look. A couple of months back, we were treated with a series of videos by a YouTuber documenting his attempt to build the world’s first Tesla powered by a V8 engine. And now we have stumbled upon a video made by a talented Huawei engineer on a self-balancing electric bicycle that can ride around without anyone on the saddle. As Gizmodo appropriately puts it, your brain will have a hard time processing it. It looks trippy! The video is in Chinese, and sadly there are no subtitles either, but the whole process is quite well illustrated through the video.
The Chinese engineer, who goes by the name Zhihui Jun, says he was inspired to work on this project after meeting with an accident while riding a bike. He immediately started experimenting with different ideas by developing a 3D model of CAD. Once all the preliminary details were dialed in, Jun began working on creating the hardware to transform a regular bicycle into something truly mind-blowing. He is equipped by bike with two brushless electric motors and a servo motor to control the steering. To keep the bicycle perfectly balanced, Jun strapped a flywheel underneath the seat. The gyroscopic force of the flywheel helps the bike stay balanced. The engineer even demonstrated that the bike could balance on a thin rail and won’t drop even if you try nudging or altering the load on any side.
The bike also packs a rather impressive suite of electronics that includes an RGB depth-sensing camera and a LIDAR sensor, along with Huawei’s Ascend 310 as the AI processor. These sensors help the bike operate anonymously and navigate through traffic without crashing into obstacles. Jun says the bike’s ‘mind’ is capable of perceptive thinking and decision-making. The bike is fitted with a lithium-ion battery from a model plane that can power the bike for 2-3 hours. Although Zhihui Jun’s bike is strictly a research project, the concept is definitely worthy of attention.
[All images by Zhihui Jun Via: Designboom]