Toshiba's tetrapod robot can view places too risky for humans

Posted at 11/22/12 10:50 AM

TOKYO - Toshiba Corp. said Wednesday it has developed a tetrapod robot to inspect locations too risky for humans such as the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant crippled by the March 2011 earthquake-tsunami disaster.

The multiple joints of the robot, which is fitted with a camera, a dosimeter and a smaller companion robot, can walk on uneven surfaces, avoid obstacles, climb stairs and access areas too challenging to be reached by wheeled or crawling robots, Toshiba said.

The main robot, measuring 62 centimeters long, 59 cm wide and 107 cm high, can release the companion robot fitted with a second camera. The smaller robot can take images of narrow places, tubes and other spaces too small for the main robot to enter.

Toshiba plans to continue research and development on the tetrapod robot to give it the capability to install shielding, stop flows of water and remove obstacles.