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Robot Capable of Handling Soft Materials

The Science and Innovation Section of the British Embassy (http://ukinjapan.fco.gov.uk/resources/en/pdf/5606773/201105news) reports:

 

Tokyo University's research team has developed a robot system which can fold sheet-type soft materials like cloth. Through real-time monitoring of the object every 0.002 seconds, the robot can catch the end of the material in the air while holding the opposite end and fold in the middle in 0.5 seconds. Conventionally, soft materials are supposed to be difficult to handle in the air because of their flexible shape. The team solved this problem by moving the material at high-speed which stabilizes its shape and makes it easy to monitor its whole movement. The system can be used for dealing with soft products such as cloth and vegetables. (29 April 2011, Nikkan Kogyo Shimbun).

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