02/08/2010 – Are you prepared to work with your robot co-worker?
This topic might sound weird to most of us. But due to rapid technological advancement, it will be soon considered normal for us to see robots in our workplaces.
Engineers have unveiled perhaps one of the biggest innovations in manufacturing since the invention of the assembly line. Msnbc.com reports that the “the world’s most dexterous robot,” the Robonaut2, was created in a joint project from NASA and General Motors researchers. The Robonaut2 or R2 was constructed to look like a human from the waist up to better fit into human work spaces. That means R2 can replace humans on the job or work alongside them.
NASA and General Motors introduced Robonaut2 – or R2 for short – is faster, more dexterous and more technologically advanced than its predecessors and a step closer toward becoming a co-worker in the aerospace or automotive industries. R2 is able to use its hands to do work beyond the scope of previously introduced humanoid robots according to NASA. For GM, R2 would be used to test car safety and develop safer manufacturing plants. GM hopes to integrate robots with human workers. NASA would use R2 as a helper—or stand-in—for humans on space missions.
This is not NASA’s first venture into robotics. The Robonaut was originally created by NASA and the Pentagon’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. The R2 follows a similar design as the original Robonaut, which was created to mimic the work of a spacewalker without the pesky problem of putting a person in space.
A video of what R2 can do shows the robot writing in cursive and lifting a 20lb weight. The robot uses bleeding edge control, sensor and vision technologies. The R2 has a human torso, head, arms, hands and fingers. And in the future, the robot might have a leg to help it shimmy along in space with ease.
Thanks for reading ~
Don’t forget to take the quiz on Blackboard.
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