JR Robotics, in collaboration with VStone, just introduced several new humanoid robot configurations and were demonstrating what the new robots were capable of at the All Japan PlaModel/RadiCon Show in Chiba this week.
Their original humanoid robot offering, named the RB-1000, offered good performance at a reasonable price, but for some reason didn't attract a lot of attention both here in Japan and overseas. With the new RB-2000 series, JR has put a lot of time and effort into creating several "WOW" demonstrations that they hope will create a strong impression in the mind of the buying public. We caught up with them at the show on Thursday, and managed to capture some of their demos in the video clip below.
We should make it clear that there are several different RB-2000 series configurations shown during the demos, and some of the functionality is 'optional'. As you might expect, the higher the model number, the more degrees of freedom (DOF), and the higher the price.
The demonstrations that they specifically put together to show off the new robots, include doing gymnastics on a bar - pull-ups and giant spins. Unfortunately, since the robot doesn't have any hands, the bar was passed through openings in the robots arms - so it's impossible to fall off. It does, however, demonstrate the considerable torque available from the JR servos used in the arms.
Another demo features the infamous rabbit hop that was a key judging criteria for the recent ROBO-ONE 10 competition last month. JR even went to the trouble to add some neat sound effects emphasizing each hop. It's a great demo to impress other builders, and does show off the robot's leg strength and balance. But it's not something you want to encourage customers to do with the robot regularly since it can result in some pretty severe gear and servo damage.
One of the very cool optional capabilities they demonstrated was the proximity sensors installed in the robots head. Towards the end of the video clip you'll see them show off this by varying the distance they hold their hand in front of the robot. (Yes, that's Takahashi-san, the creator of the MANOI PF01 and FT, asking some of the questions and then picking up the robot at the end to listen to it.)
For some unknown reason, the JR website currently only shows the older RB-1000 robot product.
JRPropo Website (Japanese)
VStone Official Webpage (Japanese)