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• Evolta

evo-evoltaTomotaka Takahashi has done it again with Evolta, a robot named after the brand of Panasonic batteries it was designed to promote.  In the last few years Takahashi-san has gained notoriety in Japan due to his unique and colorful robots, which have popped up in various media.  This rise in recognition no doubt led Panasonic to the idea of a robotic next generation energizer bunny.

According to the Guinness Book of World Records, Panasonic’s Evolta batteries are the longest-lasting of their kind.  To prove it, the Evolta (a portmanteau of evolution & voltage) robot was designed specifically to climb a tiny rope – and what better challenge than to climb from the base of the Grand Canyon all the way to the top?  That’s no small feat for a robot only 17cm tall (6.7 inches) powered by two AA batteries!

The event was set to take place on May 22nd 2008, but due to bad weather Evolta couldn’t make the climb.  The next day, rain and hail continued to thwart his tireless efforts.  On the third day, after some minor repairs, and 6 hours & 46 minutes of climbing, Evolta finally inched his way to victory.

Video (Mirror):

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On October 21st 2008, Panasonic announced a promotional contest where you could win a model based on the Evolta robot (among other prizes).  Participants needed to correctly answer quiz questions and supply product barcodes to enter.  The deadline was Jan 31st, 2009.

Media

Video (2008 news report):
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Image credits:
Panasonic | Impress Robot Watch | Akihabara News

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