2007 Robot of the Year selected

Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) has announced the winners of the annual Robot Award, established last year to recognize outstanding developments in the field of robotics and encourage further research. The Grand Prize 2007 Robot of the Year went to an industrial robot from Fanuc Ltd. called M-430iA. This super-fast two-armed industrial robot system is equipped with visual tracking functions optimized for work on food and pharmaceutical manufacturing lines. The winner’s pair of multi-axis robot arms can accurately pick up 120 items per minute as they move along a conveyor belt, and they can work non-stop 24 hours a day.

Additional prizes were presented to four other robots, including ZMP’s miuro, a robotic blood sample courier system developed by Matshushita, miniature AC servo actuators developed by Harmonic Drive Systems, and an MR image-guided surgical robot system developed by Hitachi and several universities.

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