Hitachi unveils robot to help cleanup at Fukushima plant

December 08, 2012

By TOMOYA FUJITA/ Staff Writer

Hitachi Ltd. has developed a remote-control robot that can perform heavy lifting tasks and assist in recovery work at the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.

Called Astaco-Sora, it can lift up to 300 kilograms. The robot is expected to be operational at the plant next year.

The design of Astaco-Sora is relatively compact to allow it to reach areas of the nuclear complex where workers cannot. It is 150 centimeters tall and 98 cm wide.

Hitachi said the radio-operated device can perform tasks for 15 hours nonstop.

Operators control the robot by watching its image on a monitor via six cameras installed on the body of Astaco-Sora.

The robot can lift concrete blocks, electric lines and many other objects with its two pincer-like arms. The arms can also be fitted with electric saws and other tools.

It was shown to reporters on Dec. 7.

By TOMOYA FUJITA/ Staff Writer
  • 1
submit to reddit
Hitachi Ltd.’s Astaco-Sora robot picks up an electric line with its left arm and severs it with the pincer of its right arm during a demonstration in Hitachi, Ibaraki Prefecture, on Dec. 7. (Tomoya Fujita)

Hitachi Ltd.’s Astaco-Sora robot picks up an electric line with its left arm and severs it with the pincer of its right arm during a demonstration in Hitachi, Ibaraki Prefecture, on Dec. 7. (Tomoya Fujita)

Toggle
  • Hitachi Ltd.’s Astaco-Sora robot picks up an electric line with its left arm and severs it with the pincer of its right arm during a demonstration in Hitachi, Ibaraki Prefecture, on Dec. 7. (Tomoya Fujita)

More AJW