Though his movement is a bit stiff, slow and voice monotonous, he willingly turns on the television with a chest-mounted remote control, and brings a can of drink for you. Within years, a humanoid robot HRP-2 — currently under development by a Japanese national technology institute — could be a little domestic helper.
HRP-2’s height is 154 cm and mass is 58 kg including batteries. It has 30 degrees of freedom (DOF) including two DOF for its hip. The cantilevered crotch joint allows for walking in a confined area. Its highly compact electrical system packaging allows it to forgo the commonly used “backpack” used on other humanoid robots.
The robots — named Promet — are being developed by the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, and can run errands. They are designed to respond to verbal instructions and are capable of capturing three-dimensional images of objects and locating them through an infrared sensor.