Japan’s attempt to produce a robot able to resist high levels of radiation and extreme heat has failed for the moment, as a demonstration made by Toshiba ended abruptly when the robot froze on stage and had to be carried away by technicians.
Despite being a well-known producer of robots, Japan did not have a device capable of entering the Fukushima nuclear facility after last year’s accident caused by the earthquake and tsunami. It used instead robots made in the U.S.
Toshiba unveiled on Wednesday a four-legged robot able to carry up to 20 kg of equipment in a nuclear environment and to lift itself up if it falls over on uneven surfaces.
But the robot locked up and froze suddenly while trying to balance itself.
In a previous incident in October, a crawling robot developed by the Chiba Institute of Technology lost connection with its operators while inspecting the Fukushima’s No. 2 reactor building and was abandoned inside.