Japan is all set to host the Tokyo Olympics 2020 and Paralympic games this year and will use robotics technology for a number of applications. Apart from helping with the physical mobility of people, the robots will also provide ‘virtual’ mobility in terms of the ability to experience new things and interact with people. The robots will help participants and other attendees on the ground get relevant information besides ferrying food, drinks, and equipment.
Humanoid and Purpose-built Robots
As part of the Tokyo 2020 Robot Project, Toyota is providing five robots for the games which include humanoid and purpose-built designs. Two robots are designed after the games’ mascots—Miraitowa and Someity. These blue and pink robots can move their hands and arms, which they will put to good use when greeting people at official sites and for photos opportunities. Besides, they will also respond to human interactions, thanks to the embedded cameras, sensors, and digital ‘eyes’.
The humanoid robot THR3 comes packed with much more action. It can provide remote audiences with the experience of being at the games. It can help stream images and sounds from remote locations to the Olympic site. This robot can interact with the athletes and others much like the humans do by mirroring their actions.
T-TR1 is a telepresence robot that includes a huge display unit and cameras mounted on a wheeled base. The large display will be used to project life-size images for a realistic, life-like virtual experience. The T-TR1 will facilitate interaction between people across locations with the athletes to provide a virtual ‘in-game’ experience.
The next robot is a Human Support Robot (HSR) which will help guests find their seats at the venue.
Delivery Support Robot (DSR) will deliver pre-ordered snacks and drinks to people on their seats at the games venue. People can place their orders from a tablet.
The last robot is the Field Support Robot (FSR), which looks like a box on wheels. As the name suggests, this robot will provide on-field support for the field events like javelin throw, shot-put, discus throw, etc. Once the item has been thrown and the distance recorded, the FSR will retrieve the equipment and return it to the designated place.
The Olympics are not very far away and soon we’ll be able to see these robots live in action. With active participation of robots in the Olympics and Paralympic games 2020, it will be a test ground for real-life use cases where robots can play a more active role.
The article has been written by Neetu Katyal, Content and Marketing Consultant
She can be reached on LinkedIn.