Hi Guys and welcome, I am Philip English from Robophil.com and on this video we are doing an Interview with Sang-Ho Hyon from the Humanoid Systems Laboratory, which is part of the Ritsumeikan University in Japan. We managed to speak to Sang-Ho at the IREX 2015 Robot Exhibition in Tokyo, Japan.
Humanoid Systems Lab is offering the best research environment to explore state-of-the-art hydraulic humanoid robots, quadruped robots, exoskeleton robots, hydraulic excavators, and so on. Most of the robots are torque-controlled, and all the key components including the software and microcontrollers are standardized so that the team members can “quickly” design and develop various robots to implement “dynamic” motion controller and/or machine learning algorithms.
Philip: Hi guys Philip English again, so we are in a very very interesting stance today and we’ve got a gentleman here that will introduce himself and he is from the university. And so can you introduce yourself
Sang-ho: I’m Sang-Ho Hyon from Ritsumeikan University.
Philip: Brilliant, so is this a University in Tokyo or outside Tokyo?
Sang-ho: It’s in Shiga near Tokyo, Kyoto sorry.
Philip: Near Kyoto, ok to the West
Philip: Ok so can you tell me a little bit about what you guys up to
Sang-ho: We are developing force control robot. We have humanoid robot, quadruped robot and many many. And our robot can control the joint force precisely, very precisely, using the force control. The robot can keep its balance compliantly even in an uneven terrain, very compress terrain.
Philip: So what I know is, there is no motors or there’s not a lot of power going to the robot
Sang-ho: if you use electric motors it’s difficult to control the force, in our robot we’re using very powerful hydraulic acculator.
Philip: Ok, Ok cause that’s the first thing. I’ve seen a lot of robot on the telly obviously, and I’ve seen them to have big generators, you know, creating a lot of power but this one is silent. You know, there’s not big power that actually goes into it. So how long have you been working on these robots?
Sang-ho: So I launched the lab 5 years ago, but personally I started hydraulic robots when I was a PhD student, so 15 years ago.
Philip: Fifteen years, ok. So do your robots end up going to a commercial space or is it just research.
Sang-ho: Currently, we are focusing on research, just research.
Philip: Ok. I mean I must admit they look very similar to like the Boston Dynamics guys, so do you compete in the DARPA competitions or
Sang-ho: Ah we try to apply for the competition, but actually we did but we failed to accept. Our project was not accepted.
Philip: Ok thats fine, maybe next year or like the year after that?
Sang-ho: Hmmmmm I’m not sure yet
Philip: So up your guys, ok that’s fine. So obviously you’ve got 3 main robots. You got a humanoids one, a dog like one and what’s that one
Sang-ho: that one?
Philip: Spider yeah
Sang-ho: That’s a spider like but this robot
Philip: yeah that one
Sang-ho: it has hydraulic power on board
Philip: electric driven yeah
Sang-ho: so it’s very silent
Philip: It’s very quiet yeah. I know these robots are very very quiet, very quiet. Ok that’s right so I suppose the future is just more and more development and trying to I suppose I actually ment commercial product, is that
Sang-ho: It depends on with manpower and funds, but if someone is interested then we are happy to collaborate.
Philip: Ok, so at the moment you have 3 robots so are you gonna be working just on those 3 robots or are yoiu looking to developing fourth or fifth robot?
Sang-ho: Ah depends on students interest. I’m ok with these 3 robots, because we have to focus on the control so
Sang-ho: so if you have many many robots its difficult to focus on research.
Philip: Yes, yeah I think because you got humanoid, a dog like one and another one. I think you got the 3 main ones there so and obviously its just the body power of the robots. Are you working on things like vision aswell?
Sang-ho: that’s very important direction of research. Actually we’re ahh even though we dont show the demo we are trying to put many sensors to integrate the intellegent recognition.
Philip: Alright, so does that mean in the future you can put some artificial like intellegence to the robot
Sang-ho: That’s important additional research. Actually we’re gonna collaborate with AI guys or machine running guys.
Philip: like you guys build that half and the other gus build the other half and collaborate. Is that in Japan yeah
Sang-ho: its easier for us to collaborate in Japan, but it depends if someone call us we’re happy to collaborate
Philip: Ok, ok that’s right so you’re collaboration so far is just in Japan? Have you got any links to America or Europe?
Sang-ho: Currently, we just, we dont collaborate with other institute but we’re open
Philip: Ok, ok but you’re acquiring to, ok it’s a good like overview to see what you guys are doing so thanks very much of your time
Brilliant Thanks Guys, I hope you enjoyed the interview and I want to say a big thank you to Sang-Ho Hyon from Humanoid Systems Laboratory, for his time and the interview.
If you want to learn more about the Humanoid Systems Laboratory and Ritsumeikan University I have put in links below, for your review
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