Lifting patients into and out of bed, baths, toilets, and so on is one of the most taxing jobs a nurse can have. Robots that help get the job done are being designed by a number of companies (see Riken’s RIBA, and Panasonic’s Transfer Assist Robot), including Japan Logic Machine. Their solution, Care Robot Yurina, is designed to lift patients weighing up to 80kg (176 lbs). Its arms can be swapped from firm cushions to a cloth tarp, allowing patients to be safely picked up from the floor or fully lowered into a bath. Yurina can also be used as a rehabilitation walker, as well as a wheelchair, which gives it a bit of an edge over its competition. RIBA’s arms, for example, don’t look quite as safe for the patient as Yurina’s various attachments.
Yurina is 127cm (4’2″) tall and weighs 160kg (352 lbs). It can operate for 10 hours before it needs to be charged (which takes about 6 hours). It can be controlled through voice commands, its touchscreen, and an optional joystick. It was recently demonstrated at ROBOTECH Japan 2010, though it has been shown as early as April 2009.
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