The purpose in robotic development is for make human life comfortable, easier, and safer. The advancement of science support technology development. Development in Computer technology and mechanical system brought the robotic technology today. Today’s robotic technology not only use for industrial manufacture for massive production, but also for substitute human work and for human support.
The advancement of technology tend to make human life easier and more comfortable, and safer. Robotic technology now gives opportunity to handicap people to more actively mobile, and can do activity almost like regular people. And also make them more independent and confident. Just like Whill, one of the japan company. They sell stylish wheel chair that can transport up to 20 km in one charge, and it can steer either using joystick or IPhone. The wheel chair design using omnidirectional wheel, allow the chair turning easily and with tight turning radius. Also the wheel chair equipped with advance drive system to ride on rough terrain.
Whill started to work on this product inspired by a man who no longer be able to go groceries shopping because he feel weak and did not like the way people look at him. Even though the wheel chair users is physically fit but they do not have much more confident to go oustside with the wheelchair. Then, Whill come up with the idea to make wheel chair not only as a wheel chair but also as a transportation. Whill is a great wheel chair, now Whill user can be more mobile, and the cool and simple design make it more elegance. It will change the way people see wheel chair user, and make them more confident to interact with other people.
Another robot which develop to make disable people more active is ReWalk 6.0, developed by Israel’s robotic company. This exoskeleton robot allow for people who can walk to walk again, or for medical therapy. This exoskeleton robot only allow to use under medical supervision. ReWalk use servo on hips and knees to provide walking power, and use accelerometer sensor to detect the movement of the leg when user want to shift leg. The support straps use to distribute the weight along the body.
ReWalk still need a few improvement on the hardware, so the people who want to wear it on the daily activity would be more convenient. For example for going to toilet and etc, some user opinion said it took 30 minutes to strap into the exoskeleton. The newer version allow user to bend over while sitting to wear the exoskeleton by themselves. The ReWalk equipped with wrist-watched controlled switch, which have three mode sit, stand, walk, and stair mode. This exoskeleton technology was impressive which can help people under medical treatment, healing as they do their activity.
In the medical field, robot starting to use for surgery, especially for prostate surgery. Researcher at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) develop the robot that can perform surgery inside the MRI scanner. MRI scanner tight with a person and a robot. Because inside the MRI scanner not allowed any metal device, so the robot made from plastic parts and ceramic piezoelectric motor. The driver of the motor designed to be low cost and low power. The robot should be able to do the surgery without affecting image quality.
The regular biopsy the doctor perform to check the prostate is far from precise. Sometimes the biopsies precisely aided by ultrasound imaging. Using MRI, the doctor can identify the suspicious part. Then, activate the small robot to perform the surgery. The current condition according to the article , the system is not ready for clinical testing. In the future, this technology can make the surgery
more precise, and faster.
Panasonic introduce newer version of health care robot named Hospi robot. Hospi is autonomous cargo container. It can deliver medicine from pharmacy to the patient in the different floor. Or even delivery of the food. This robot move around at the hospital, which is robot friendly environment flat, well defined, and it can adapt to elevator. But it still have problem with the robot management when face the human moving around. The robot equipped with the dynamic path planning using cheap sensor. Even though the robot price is high cost but the maintenance cost is very cheap.
There is another robot has type like Hospi robot, using for health care. The robot can moving around in the room, controlled by the patient. For example open the window, take the food, vacuuming the room, and etc. Delivery robot in the hospital make the operation of hospital more arranging, and punctual. But for take care of the patient is sad, because eventhough the robot can perform human work, but it better when someone dear to us take care for ourselves. No matter how advance robotic technology, human presence is more comforting.