TORRANCE, Calif. – A breakthrough version of Honda’s humanoid robot ASIMO made its North American debut at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Nev. The latest ASIMO incorporates several significant technological advancements including a streamlined new design, even more fluid and quick movements and the ability to run at nearly 4 mph. The running robot also has several other new mobility and artificial intelligence capabilities for enhanced human interaction.
For the first time in North America, we’re demonstrating this newest iteration of Honda’s remarkable humanoid robotics technology. ASIMO now has a revolutionary ability to run and maneuver at unprecedented speeds," said Jeffrey Smith, American Honda assistant vice president. "Honda continues to further the development of humanoid robotics technology, believing that one day ASIMO will be a helper to people in need."
The new ASIMO can much better interact with and carry out commands given by people and can more effectively perform numerous new tasks including moving carts and carrying objects. The primary advancements of the newest ASIMO include:
1. Enhanced human interaction
By providing ASIMO with the ability to recognize the surrounding environment through its visual sensors, floor surface sensor, ultrasonic sensor, and by an IC Tele-interaction Communication Card , ASIMO can more autonomously interact with people. Through the coordinated use of its eye cameras in the head and the force (kinesthetic) sensors on its wrists, ASIMO can give and receive an object such as a tray. And by using these force sensors, ASIMO can hold the hand of the person and move in sync with them.
2. Carrying objects using a cart
ASIMO is now capable of handling a cart freely while maintaining an appropriate distance from the cart by adjusting the force of its right and left arms to push a cart using the force sensors on its wrists. Even when the movement of the cart is disturbed, ASIMO can continue maneuvering by taking flexible actions such as slowing down or changing directions.
Through proactive control of ASIMO's posture while both feet are off the ground, ASIMO can run at nearly 4 mph. In addition, running in a circular pattern at a high speed was achieved by tilting the center of gravity of ASIMO's body inside of the circle to maintain balance with the amount of centrifugal force experienced.
Honda continues ASIMO's development with the goal of one day producing a robot capable of assisting those who lack full mobility and of working in environments dangerous for humans.
ASIMO (Advanced Step in Innovative Mobility) is the world's most advanced humanoid robot, with the ability to run, walk forward and backward, climb stairs, turn smoothly without pausing, and maintain balance, even while walking on uneven slopes and surfaces. Honda engineers began developing a humanoid robot in 1986 for the purpose of someday helping people in need. After years of research and development, they created an advanced humanoid robot able to function in real-world environments. ASIMO made its U.S. debut February 14, 2002, when it rang the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of Honda Motor Co., Ltd.’s listing on the NYSE. Learn more about ASIMO at asimo.honda.com.
Honda is one of the world's leading producers of mobility products including its diverse line-up of automobiles, motorcycles and ATVs, power products, marine engines, personal watercraft and the new advanced light jet, HondaJet. Honda began operations in North America in 1959, with the establishment of American Honda Motor Co., Inc., Honda's first overseas subsidiary. Honda now employs more than 35,000 associates in North America and operates 13 major manufacturing plants producing automobiles, motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles, personal watercraft, engines, transmissions and other components. Many of these products are designed and developed at Honda's U.S. R&D centers in Ohio, Los Angeles and North Carolina. Honda annually purchases more than $16 billion in parts and materials from suppliers in North America.
(*1) IC Tele-interaction Communication Card: By adding an optical communication function to the IC tag, the existence and position of the person or object can be identified. With this card, ASIMO can recognize the location and identity of the person regardless of where the person stands in a 360-degree range from ASIMO.