Land Rovers and dogs are a natural pair. The durability of Land Rovers has always helped them be perfect vehicles for dog owners, and every adventure-mobile needs a dog. To make sure that this tradition continues, Land Rover has 3D printed a dog’s paw to be used to test the durability of their rear bumpers.
Dogs climbing into the back of Land Rovers after a spirited run in the park can cause lots of damage, and the “RoboYogi” 3D-printed paw was designed to replicate the stresses put on the bodywork at this moment.
Yogi is a 9-year-old Labrador from the National Guide Dog Breeding Centre, a remarkable charity which has bred almost 11,000 puppies to serve as guide dogs to Britain’s 2,360,000 people with some form of sight loss. As part of the testing of the New Defender, she jumped in and out of the cargo area. Sensors measured the top pressure areas every time she went in and out.
These were used as benchmarks for the “RoboYogi,” a 3D-printed version of Yogi’s paw. This replica featured spring-loaded claws, which could accurately follow the same pressure tracks that a real dog would.
With this RoboYogi, JLR can now perform a test on rear bumpers to see how they fare after years of dog claw abuse. The RoboYogi does a test where it scratches the panel ten times, followed by one side-to-side scratch. After 5,000 cycles, the test has replicated a decade of abuse from a dog going to play in the park.
Land Rover decided to use the Defender for this testing, as the side-hinged door creates a large, flat surface on top of the bumper for the RoboYogi to test on. However, the lessons learned from materials on the Defender can be transferred to wear points on other Land Rovers.
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