The P4 robot is about the same height as the P3, standing at 160cm tall, but the weight has been reduced from 130kg to 80kg. There are also some blue covers on the upper torso and feet and he has 34 degrees of freedom, 4 more than the P3. A flexible waist improves walking and presumably running and dancing as well.
Well look what we have here. When we weren’t looking, Honda has begun to operate its next generation solar hydrogen station prototype at the Los Angeles Center of Honda R&D America. The idea is that its a single, integrated unit which can be installed in any garage.
This Honda Solar Hydrogen Station is smaller than its predecessor and can produce enough hydrogen through an 8-hour overnight fill for the average daily commute (which is about 10,000 miles annually) for each fuel cell electric vehicle. Pretty handy being able to refill your vehicle overnight and you can sleep well while its filling, knowing that you are lowering CO2 emissions, since you take advantage of off-peak power rates. Daytime charging is solar power.
There are several high tech personal mobility devices floating around. The Segway may be the most notable of the geeky mobility choices out there. Honda has announced one of the strangest personal mobility devices I have seen called the U3-X.
The small device is very compact and portable, but has only one wheel. It looks like something a space age clown should be riding. The device fits between a riders legs, and looks much like a unicycle. The device can move in all directions, including side-to-side and diagonally.
Robots will likely inherit the Earth. Why do you think we have the space program? We like to pretend that it’s all about exploration, but really it’s because we know that it’s either leave willingly or be evicted. So onward to Mars, where we will create more metal killers and have to run all over again. Silly humans. Here’s some of what we covered this week over at Botropolis.
WWII: With Terminator.
Cyborgs: Cornell Enslaves Tobacco Hornworms.
DIY: Pocket Drunken Robots.
Forget Samsung’s viral marketing ad with LEDs strapped to a bunch of sheep. Honda has gone all out, showing off its new Insight by turning their LED headlights into a gigantic animated Lite-Brite for an upcoming commercial. The commercial is called “Let it Shine,” and you can watch it below.
The Insight can cruise on electric power alone but not accelerate, so it isn’t technically a hybrid. The Insight’s main selling point is the price, starting under $20,000.
The Honda Ecological Drive System (HDAS) will be included with the 2009 Honda Insight. It will alert drivers to their driving habits through a color coded speedometer. For instance if you’re going along at a grandmotherly yet fuel efficient speed, the speedometer goes green, indicating that you are a responsible and possibly elderly driver.
When you find yourself trying to outrun the fuzz at 90mph, the speedometer turns blue, indicating that you are most likely on COPS and should really slow down. Seems like red, yellow and green would have been better colors to use. It’s a great idea that should save many gallons of gas as well as keep you safe from yourself.
Honda is known for it’s cars and motorcycles, but the company’s sights reach into other areas as well. Now that they have their robot, Asimo walking on his own, Honda is using robotics technology for some other things. Like an experimental walking assist device for disabled or elderly individuals.
Honda will be showcasing the device at the International Trade Fair on Barrier Free Equipments & Rehabilitation for the Elderly & the Disabled. The device is available in three sizes and uses brushless DC motors powered by lithium ion batteries that will provide up to two hours of walking assistance per charge. The assimilation of our elderly will soon be underway. Soon after they will be flying around in giant Borg cubes and harassing the Enterprise.