Newest version of Honda's ASIMO coming to TV on April 15Mon, 07 Apr 2014 10:02:00 EST
Honda's ASIMO robot is moving into its teenage years, having originally been introduced in 2000, and like all teens, it's still learning. The bot has received regular incremental upgrades over that time, and the latest version will premiere on LIVE with Kelly and Michael on Tuesday, April 15.
The newest enhancements provide ASIMO with improved hand dexterity, the ability to use sign language, run faster, climb stars more smoothly, balance on one foot, jump and more. Honda says other new features will be demonstrated with hosts Kelly Ripa and Michael Strahan on the show.
The ongoing development of ASIMO, which stands for Advanced Step in Innovative Mobility, is being done so that one day it can help humans who require assistance. The current version is 4-feet, 3-inches tall, weighs 110 pounds and is made mostly from magnesium alloy and plastic. A big limit is still its lithium-ion battery that only provides 40 minutes of charge. The robot has not needed human control to move since a previous iteration in 2011, which also improved its manual dexterity. It could even pour drinks.
While you can't stroll into your local Honda dealer and buy an ASIMO (at least not yet), its technology has been adapted to other Honda projects. The Miimo lawnmower trims grass without human assistance, and the Uni-Cub β mobility device is adapted from the robot's balancing and movement tech. Scroll down to read a bit about the new abilities.
ALL-NEW VERSION OF ASIMO WILL DEBUT IN NORTH AMERICA APRIL 15
Honda will introduce its newest version of ASIMO, the world's most advanced humanoid robot, to U.S. audiences on the popular nationally syndicated talk show "LIVE with Kelly and Michael," on Tuesday, April 15, 2014. The newest version of ASIMO will join hosts Kelly Ripa and Michael Strahan to debut several of its new robotic abilities.
The new version of ASIMO - which stands for Advanced Step in Innovative Mobility - features enhanced hand dexterity, including the ability to sign in both Japanese and American sign language, as well as the ability to run faster than previously, climb stairs more smoothly, hop, jump, balance on one foot, and transition seamlessly between walking and running, among other new and unique capabilities.
"ASIMO was designed to help those in society who need assistance, and Honda believes that these improvements in ASIMO bring us another step closer to our ultimate goal of being able to help all kinds of people in need," said Satoshi Shigemi, Senior Chief Engineer with Honda R&D Co., Ltd. in Japan, responsible for humanoid robotics.
Following the broadcast on "LIVE with Kelly and Michael," ASIMO will demonstrate its new capabilities for national technology and science media in New York.
Honda introduced the first version of ASIMO, the world's most advanced, bi-pedal humanoid robot, in 2000, after 14 years of research on humanoid robotics. Honda created ASIMO to help people and society, to create a helpmate for humans requiring assistance with their daily lives.
The small, lightweight robot is designed to operate fluidly in a human environment, and is capable of walking, running, climbing and descending stairs, avoiding objects, and recognizing human faces, among other skills.
The new version of ASIMO is 4'3" tall (130 cm), weighs 110 lbs (50 kg), and is made of magnesium alloy, plastic resin and other materials. ASIMO runs on a rechargeable lithium ion battery, with an approximate operating time of 40 minutes before recharging.
Previous versions of ASIMO have entertained people around the United States, while showcasing its innovative technology, including ringing the opening bell on the New York Stock Exchange, conducting the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, walking the red carpet at a Hollywood movie premiere, and appearing in regular performances at Disneyland.
Honda established operations in America in 1959, and now employs more than 26,000 associates in its U.S. sales, R&D and manufacturing operations with a capital investment of more than $12.5 billion.
Based on its longstanding commitment to "build products close to the customer" Honda operates 14 major manufacturing facilities in North America, producing a wide range of Honda and Acura automobiles, automobile engines and transmissions, Honda all-terrain vehicles, and power equipment products such as lawn mowers, mini-tillers and general purpose engines, using domestic and globally sourced parts.
Seven Honda auto plants in the region, including four in the U.S., have the capacity to produce 1.92 million automobiles each year. In 2013, nearly 95 percent of the Honda and Acura automobiles sold in the U.S. were produced in North America.
Honda operates major research and development centers in the U.S. that fully design, develop and engineer many of the products Honda produces in North America.
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By Chris Bruce
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