Space robot Kirobo shakes hands with a Guinness World Records official on March 27 in Tokyo. (Ryuta Koike)
Japan's 'astronaut' robot sets Guinness World Records
A talking, space-traveling Japanese robot has set two Guinness World Records.
The Asahi Shimbun
Shikibo's new Super Anier M fabric bids 'sayonara' to 'middle-aged fatty odor'
OSAKA--A textile manufacturer here says it has come up with a solution for all those middle-aged men emitting body odor.
The Asahi Shimbun
TEPCO believes nearly all nuclear fuel melted in Fukushima reactor
Tokyo Electric Power Co. said almost all the nuclear fuel in the No. 1 reactor at the Fukushima plant likely melted in the aftermath of the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami.
A prototype humanoid robot puffs out its chest to express joy to a traditional bunraku puppet during its demonstration in Osaka on March 16. (Ryo Kato)
PHOTO: Engineers develop robot that mimics actions of bunraku puppet
OSAKA--A group of researchers here have developed a robot that expresses joy, anger, sadness and pleasure with body movements that are based on the moves of traditional bunraku puppets.
JAXA unveils its Mercury Magnetospheric Orbiter at a facility in Sagamihara on March 15. (Sayaka Yamaguchi)
JAXA shows off orbiting space probe bound for Mercury in 2016
SAGAMIHARA--Japan's space agency unveiled its Mercury probe on March 15 here that will be launched in 2016 on a mission to unlock the mysteries of the planet closest to the sun.
Researchers show off a flying robot designed to measure radiation levels at the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant at Tohoku University in Sendai. (Ryoma Komiyama)
FOUR YEARS AFTER: Tohoku University develops flying robot to measure radiation levels
SENDAI--A research team from Tohoku University and other institutions has developed a robot capable of being sent aloft and surveying radiation levels inside the reactor building of the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.
The transmitter antennae, foreground, and the receiver antennae to transmit energy converted into microwaves at Mitsubhishi Electric Corp.’s outdoor testing ground in Hyogo Prefecture (Tatsuyuki Kobori)
Successful test raises prospects of space-based solar power generation
Japan’s space agency has successfully transmitted electricity converted into microwaves in an experiment that moves the world closer to receiving energy generated by orbiting solar panels.
A 1/40 scale model of a building undergoes a seismic test at a Shimizu Corp. facility in Tokyo on March 4. (Takashi Kamiguri)
FOUR YEARS AFTER: Seismic device can reproduce any quake
To promote protection against natural disasters, Shimizu Corp. developed a device that can reproduce the vibrations of the strongest earthquakes ever recorded, including the magnitude-9.0 temblor that struck the Tohoku region four years ago.
Filipino researchers, center and right, engage in a discussion in a lab at Hokkaido University in Sapporo on March 5. (Miki Morimoto)
Japanese, Filipino researchers to jointly develop satellites to check typhoon damage
Researchers in Japan have teamed with the government of the Philippines to develop satellites that can examine the damage caused by typhoons and massive rainstorms in the Southeast Asian nation.
The self-driving car stops in front of a pedestrian during an inaugural trial run in Suzu, Ishikawa Prefecture, on March 1. (Eijiro Morii)
Driverless car trials begin on public roads in Ishikawa city
SUZU, Ishikawa Prefecture--The first driverless car trial on a public road was held here March 1, as part of a five-year project that could transform travel in Japan.
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.

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