Avatar-style Robot Takes First Steps

Posted: Dec 27 2016, 12:42pm CST | by , Updated: Dec 27 2016, 12:49pm CST, in News | Latest Science News

Avatar-like Robot Takes First Steps
Credit: Hankook Mirae Technology

The robot is steered by a human pilot inside who uses his arm gestures to control the actions of the machine

A giant humanoid robot driven by a person in its torso has just started to walk around in a room.

Build by South Korean robotics company, the heavy manned robot looks like something straight out of Avatar movie. In fact, it is a brainchild of a sci-fi expert Vitaly Bulgarov, who has previously worked on movies like Robocop, Transformers and Terminator.

Named Method-2, the robot is approximately 13 feet tall and weighs 1.5 ton and has an ability to move forward and backward on flat terrain. The robot is first of its kind fully controlled by the person sitting inside its body. It is capable of walking like a human but is so heavy that it shakes the ground when it takes a step.

“Our robot is the world's first manned bipedal robot and is built to work in extreme hazardous areas where humans cannot go (unprotected).” Yang Jin-Ho, chairman of robotics company Hankook Mirae Technology said in a statement.

The company has spent $200 million in the project since 2014 to create such a robot that is only possible in movies and cartoons. The robot has implications for many fields from indoor industry to military and battlefield. The robot has just completed its initial test but it is far from being complete. It struggles to maintain its balance when it takes steps. Therefore, robotic company engineers are working to improve its design and construction.

“The robot is one year old so it is taking baby steps,” Yang said. “Just like humans, it will be able to move more freely in the next couple of years.”

The robot is set to hit the market next year and could be bought at around $8.3 million.

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Hira Bashir covers daily affairs around the world.




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