This is the flagship product of Japanese robotics and design company Cyberdyne, founded to bring to life the work of Professor Yoshiyuki Sankai and his team at Tsukuba University. Yep, they’re called Cyberdyne. On top of that, the robot suit is named HAL (Hybrid Assistive Limb), like the murderous supercomputer in 2001: A Space Odyssey. Getting past all that, this is an astounding design. One of those products that makes you step back and say “Oh man, are we living in the ‘future’ already?” The suit was originally designed to help the elderly, disabled, and chronic heavy lifters like factory workers and nurses. We were turned onto Cyberdyne’s HAL while looking into the possibility of using robots at disaster sites. Cyberdyne is particularly intersted in HAL’s use at the Fukushima nuclear reactor site.
The coolest thing about HAL, other than just being a robot suit? You control it with your mind. To scroll down this page or get up to get coffee, your brain sends electrical impulses to your muscles. When this happens, faint bio-electric appear on the surface of your skin. HAL reads these signals and activates the appropriate movement of its own limbs, mirroring your own. It has a battery life of around 2 hours and 40 minutes, during which you’ll be able to wear heavy suits, continuously lift heavy objects, or finally have the mobility to live independently. A remarkable leap forward in technology. And luckily for us they can’t become self-aware.
Video via diginfo.tv