Japanese emergency crews will wear robotic exoskeletons

Translation – In the “unmanned disaster systems research and development project” of NEDO, and a group of mobile robots, Ltd. and Institute, Chiba Institute of Technology, CYBERDYNE Corporation has developed a robot disaster response exoskeleton.

CYBERDYNE has developed a robot suit HAL ® for the most recent disaster recovery difficult even under harsh environments, intrusiveness of workers while ensuring the safety and health of workers, can work more safely manned.

The suit has tungsten shielding which reduces radiation exposure by about 50 percent, as well as a cooling system to prevent heatstroke. Much of the weight of the suit is supported by the exoskeleton’s legs. Vital signs such as heart rate and body temperature will also be measured in real-time. It has tools for repairing damaged pipes.

Cyberdyne previously had exoskeletons for helping senior citizens and for nurses and workers who were helping senior citizens.

Previous HAL Exoskeleton

“HAL” is expected to be applied in various fields such as rehabilitation support and physical training support in medical field, ADL support for disabled people, heavy labour support at factories, and rescue support at disaster sites, as well as in the entertainment field.

“Robot Suit HAL” is a cyborg-type robot that can supplement, expand or improve physical capability.

When a person attempts to move, nerve signals are sent from the brain to the muscles via motoneurons, moving the musculoskeletal system as a consequence. At this moment, very weak biosignals can be detected on the surface of the skin. “HAL” catches these signals through a sensor attached on the skin of the wearer. Based on the signals obtained, the power unit is controlled to move the joint in unison with the wearer’s muscle movement, enabling HAL to support the wearer’s daily activities. This is what we call a ‘voluntary control system’ that provides movement interpreting the wearer’s intention from the biosignals in advance of the actual movement. Not only a ‘voluntary control system’ “HAL” has, but also a ‘robotic autonomous control system’ that provides human-like movement based on a robotic system which integrally work together with the ‘autonomous control system’. “HAL” is the world’s first cyborg-type robot controlled by this unique Hybrid System.

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