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• Kozoh series

Kozoh-III on display at IREX 2003

A now defunct Japanese company called Robos Corporation developed a series of humanoid robots called Kozoh.  Led by Yasuo Mori (who was in his sixties at the time), the company had only four employees at its office in Nagoya.  He had worked with industrial manufacturing robots in the past, and was involved with the Nagara humanoid project before forming his own company.

Kozoh-I, completed in 2002, did not feature an exoskeleton.  It stood 90cm (3′) tall, weighed 16kg (35 lbs), and had 25 DOF (with an extra 5 DOF an extra option).  The second version of the robot was never shown.  The third version of the robot (displayed at the International Robot Exhibition in 2003) had a white body and even included several head variations that included stereoscopic CCD cameras for eyes, and a variety of sensors.  It stood 100cm (3’3″) tall, weighed 20kg (44 lbs), and could operate on its battery for approximately 1 hour.  Unfortunately, it was not demonstrated at that time.

A fourth version put on a ten minute show for audiences at the Aichi Expo in 2005.  It stood 115cm (3’9″) tall, weighed 27kg (59.5 lbs), and had 28 degrees of freedom.  It possessed rudimentary object, speech, and obstacle recognition.  Like the previous versions it ran on ART-Linux and was programmed using AIST’s OpenHRP software.  The robots were intended  to be used as research platforms by universities in RoboCup soccer.  They could track a ball, approach it, and kick it.

Kozoh-V concept drawing

A fifth version was planned, but was never completed (all that remains are conceptual sketches).  This version would have stood 130cm (4’3″) tall and was intended to be a nursing assistant.  According to one source Kozoh-IV was priced at 10,000,000 JPY ($125,000 USD), making them significantly more expensive than Fujitsu’s HOAP series.  Sadly, the company went bust and their website is no longer online.

[source: Nararika (JP)]

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Image credit:
Impress Robot Watch

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