Saturday, September 19, 2009

Bed-Shaped Robot

Panasonic announced the development of a bed-shaped robot which can be transformable between a bed and a wheelchair with the user staying in bed or wheelchair. The Robotic Bed is designed to help people with limited mobility maintain an independent lifestyle, reducing the need for assistance and expanding their mobility.

Aiming to bring about secure, safe and comfortable living, Panasonic has been conducting research and development activities in the field of welfare robots that assist human beings. For people who need assistance with daily living activities, it is essential to secure a safe and comfortable way to move on their own to lead an independent life. For care workers, it requires physical exertion to lift and move such a person from the bed to a wheelchair and carries risks of dropping and injuries. The Robotic Bed provides solutions for the both.

As the robot can transform itself from a bed into a wheelchair and vice versa at the command of the user, it eliminates not only the need for the user to transfer between the bed and a wheelchair but also the risks and burden associated with the transfer. The robot can also expand the user’s range of activities. Now, the user can join the family meal by converting the bed into a wheelchair and moving to the dining table without the need of assistance from other people.

Human-robot interface technologies are also employed to facilitate easy operation with no need for training. An interactive interface enables the user to easily transform the bed into the wheelchair. The wheelchair has an intuitive controller that allows the user to easily drive it and give it an instruction to go back into the bed.

The Robotic Bed also features Robotic Canopy, an information interface that allows for viewing television as well as operating home appliances and checking the security camera connected by home network. The display of the Canopy moves according to the user’s position and lifts automatically when the robot is converted into the wheelchair mode.

“It is still a concept model and we will not be selling it soon,” said Panasonic spokeswoman Yuka Arii. “We plan to bring it to markets in or after 2015. But we don’t know the price yet.” Japan has one of the world’s oldest populations and faces a constant shortage of care workers. -

Panasonic Corporation (パナソニック株式会社, Panasonikku Kabushiki-gaisha?) (TYO: 6752 NYSE: PC), formerly known as Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd., is a multinational corporation based in Kadoma, Japan. Its main business is in electronics manufacturing and produces products under a variety of names including Panasonic and Technics. -

Panasonic Malaysia -

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