A microrobot is a miniaturized, sophisticated machine designed to perform a specific task or tasks repeatedly and with precision. Microrobots typically have dimensions ranging from a fraction of a millimeter up to several millimeters.
A microrobot, like its larger and smaller cousins, the robot and the nanorobot , can be either autonomous or insect-like. An autonomous microrobot contains its own on-board computer, which controls the machine and allows it to operate independently. The insect scheme is more common for microrobots. In an insect-microrobot arrangement, the machine is one of a fleet of several, or many, identical units that are all controlled by a single, central computer. (The term insect comes from the fact that such robots behave like ants in an anthill or bees in a hive.)
Also see robotics .