A vehicle to be used in an experiment of the self-driving system on public road by Kanazawa University and the Suzu city government (Provided by Kanazawa University)
Driverless cars to use public roads in 5-year project
Cars that drive themselves will be tested on roadways in Ishikawa Prefecture in a five-year project that gets under way next month.
A drone that will be mass-produced in Japan on a test flight in Minami-Soma, Fukushima Prefecture, on Feb. 20 (Satoru Sekiguchi)
Japan's 1st mass-produced drone takes maiden flight
MINAMI-SOMA, Fukushima Prefecture--The nation's first mass-produced drone underwent a test flight here Feb. 20 ahead of work assisting cleanup crews near the stricken Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.
The electron microscope developed by Hitachi Ltd. boasts the world's highest  resolution. (Provided by Hitachi Ltd.)
Hitachi develops world's most powerful electron microscope
Electronics giant Hitachi Ltd. said it developed a massive transmission electron microscope with record-breaking resolution powers that allow scientists to peer even deeper into the world at the atomic level.
A contest of accuracy where participants try to stop as near as possible to a finish line, with runners wearing a Skeltonics robot, could become a reality in the future. (Provided by Skeltonics Inc.)
'Superhuman' sports of the future for anyone could be on the horizon for 2020
In a bid to level the playing field of the future, a group of researchers are creating sports that can be contested by anyone with the assistance of robotics and high-tech assistive technologies.
Softbank Corp.’s humanoid robot “Pepper” (Asahi Shimbun file photo)
Softbank to add learning technology to empathetic robot
Japanese mobile carrier Softbank said Feb. 10 it will incorporate artificial intelligence technology from IBM into its empathetic robot Pepper that will be available to Japanese consumers around midyear.
An optical lattice clock developed by physicists from the University of Tokyo and others can keep time within one second every 16 billion years. (Provided by Riken’s Quantum Metrology Laboratory)
Japanese researchers develop clock accurate to 1 second in 16 billion years
Japanese scientists have developed the world's most accurate clock that can keep time within one second every 16 billion years.
A micro-camera attached near the pen tip allows the Echo Smartpen to capture handwriting. (Natsuko Kato)
Digital pens allow smooth, convenient communication at schools, hospitals
Digital pens that capture a user’s handwriting in analog form and convert it to digital data are finding a niche at schools, hospitals and other institutions nationwide as the devices enable smooth, widespread communications.
The new shape-changing robot developed by the International Research Institute for Nuclear Decommissioning is put through tests in Hitachi, Ibaraki Prefecture, on Feb. 5. (Tsuyoshi Nagano)
New 'transformer' robot changes shape to access deadly Fukushima nuclear facilities
HITACHI, Ibaraki Prefecture--A new shape-changing robot has been rolled out that can chart previously inaccessible areas of the damaged containment vessels at the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.
The lunar rover developed by the Hakuto research team (Asahi Shimbun file photo)
Japanese team wins 'milestone award' for lunar rover development
A Japanese private-sector team was one of five entries to receive a special prize to develop an unmanned lunar rover by sponsor Google Inc.
The Asahi Shimbun
TEPCO to rely on cosmic beams to glimpse melted fuel inside Fukushima reactors
Tokyo Electric Power Co. will use cosmic rays at the crippled reactors at its Fukushima plant to identify sites with melted fuel.
Sony Corp.’s Aibo robot dog (Provided by Sony Corp.)
Sony spinoff applies Aibo intelligence to home electricity-measurement system
Former technicians of Sony Corp. have used the artificial intelligence of the company’s famed robotic dog Aibo to develop a home-use system that measures power consumption for each electrical appliance.
Information in Thai appears on a tablet computer screen when a QR code is scanned at Kansai International Airport. (Ryuji Nakagawa)
Codes provide info in 9 languages at Kansai International Airport
IZUMISANO, Osaka Prefecture--Kansai International Airport has eased the way for overseas travelers with the Jan. 20 start of a smart-device service that offers tourist information in nine languages.
A map offered by the Geospatial Information Authority of Japan shows the active Tachikawa fault in red. (Susumu Yoshida)
Hazard map shows smartphone users disaster risk at a click
Smartphone users can now access information about areas at risk of natural disasters using a new map service offered by the Geospatial Information Authority of Japan (GSI).
A shirt, socks and pillowcase that are made from the material developed by Teijin Ltd. and Kansai University that can copy the movements of users (Tomoyuki Izawa)
Teijin, Kansai University develop fabric that copies movements of wearer
Teijin Ltd. and Kansai University have developed a new clothing fabric that converts a wearer’s movements into electrical data that can be mimicked elsewhere, such as by a robot.
Masayoshi Kano, an assistant professor at Chukyo University, right, cradles his Smiby robot at the school's campus in Nagoya. (Yuta Takahashi)
Demanding baby robot consoles solitary elderly people, keeps them busy
NAGOYA--To help alleviate a sense of isolation among elderly people living alone, a robot baby that craves constant attention from its "parent" like a newborn will hit the market on Jan. 21.
The Aldebaran Robotics’ Nao, which will become part of the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ staff in spring (From the Aldebaran Robotics’ website)
French-made robot lands gig at nation's largest bank helping customers
The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ will introduce a humanoid robot to its staff lineup in spring to attract customers and offer them guidance to the right counter.
A worker, wearing a strap-on robotic device, lifts a box in Ichihara, Chiba Prefecture, on Dec. 17. (Ken Miyazaki)
New strap-on robotic devices offer lift to aged workers, undermanned companies
At a UPR Corp. distribution center in Ichihara, Chiba Prefecture, a 56-year-old male worker, wearing a strap-on motorized device that gave him an additional lifting force of 15 kilograms, easily hefted a 30-kg box on a recent workday.
The Asahi Shimbun
NEC uses image processing technology to determine safety of roads and bridges
NEC Corp. has developed technology that enables engineers to estimate the internal deterioration of aging concrete structures, such as roads and bridges, by analyzing video images of their surfaces.
A developer uses the Fish Analyzer to measure lipid levels in horse mackerel during a recent demonstration event in Omura, Nagasaki Prefecture. (Kyosuke Yamamoto)
Nagasaki team develops affordable 'analyzer' to sort out the tastiest fish
NAGASAKI--Researchers at the prefectural government, a public university and other local institutions here have jointly developed the “Fish Analyzer,” an electronic device that can measure lipid levels in fish, which costs less than one-tenth of conventional detectors using infrared rays.
Cyberdyne’s transport robot carries a heavy rice bag during a news conference in Tokyo on Dec. 24. (Aki Fukuyama)
Omron, Cyberdyne join forces on factory robotics
Omron Corp. will provide motion-detecting sensors for Cyberdyne Inc.’s robotic products, including wearable devices that allow users to emulate the movements of skilled workers at factories and construction sites, the companies said Dec. 24.

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