Robotic installation sorts Pebbles based on their Geological Age

Artists created a robotic installation that sorts and organizes river pebbles based on their geological age.

Prokop Bartoníček and Benjamin Maus created a 2×4 meter platform with robotic mechanical arm, which picks up small pebbles with vacuum and moves them to their a location based on their type and age, without human assistance.



Robotic installation sorts Pebbles based on their Geological Age (4)

Jller is part of an ongoing research project in the fields of industrial automation and historical geology. It is an apparatus, that sorts pebbles from a specific river by their geologic age. The stones were taken from the stream bed of the German river Jller, shortly before it merges with the Danube, close to the city of Ulm. The machine and its performance is the first manifestation of this research.

The sorting process happens in two steps: Intermediate, pre-sorted patterns are formed first, to make space for the final, ordered alignment of stones, defined by type and age. Starting from an arbitrary set of stones, this process renders the inherent history of the river visible.

Robotic installation sorts Pebbles based on their Geological Age (3)



Robotic installation sorts Pebbles based on their Geological Age (2)

Robotic installation sorts Pebbles based on their Geological Age (1)
via colossal