Friday, October 20, 2006

Asian Heavies Betting on Robots

Japan's Mitsubishi Heavy Industries today demonstrated their new disaster assistance robot. The remote controlled robot weighs about 120 pounds, runs on treads and has video and two-way audio.

Mitsubishi decided to get into the disaster robot business in 2000 and this is their first product. Called the "MHI MARS-G," it will sell for approximately US $170,000.

Says Naohisa Sato, a manager at Mitsubishi's Nuclear Energy Systems Department, "The market is growing because people are recently paying more attention to risk management of terrorism attacks."
He said that Japan's Fire and Disaster Management Agency plans to buy 100 disater relief robots in the next few years.

Korea's Hyundai Heavy Industries announced that it is putting extra emphasis on its industrial robot product line. They plan to expand their production of robots from the current 1500 annually to 10,000 units per year by 2010. The HHI Engine and Machinery Division began building robots in 1984 and completed their 10,000th unit in 2005.

Their target volume will place them in the top five producers of industrial robots worldwide.

Reuters AlertNet - Mitsubishi Heavy develops robot for disaster relief

The Korea Herald: Hyundai Heavy expands industrial robot production


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