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Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Disaster response robot

Researchers at the Future Robotics Technology Center (fuRo), at the Chiba Institute of Technology, have developed a new disaster response robot, the Sakura remote-controlled transfer robot. The robot is the latest in their line of disaster response robots, and has been designed so it can enter and survey the basements of the damaged Fukushima nuclear reactor buildings. It is specifically designed to collect information in underground facilities, where surveys are considered most difficult. The underground portion of the nuclear reactor building has severe conditions not seen in the above ground portion. There, a robot needs to have high mobility and be able to withstand high radiation levels.

The robot was funded by New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization, NEDO, Research and Development Project for Automated Disaster Response Systems. NEDO's R&D activities on robot technology focus on the development of safety verification methods through the implementation of safety tests, the acquisition, accumulation and analysis of safety data to establish personal safety standards as well as safety standard conformity assessment methods in order to promote Japan's efforts to realize standard establishment and dissemination of service robots.

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