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Tag : AETHON

by   -   September 27, 2013

Robotic start-up companies range from the whimsical to the amazing, from futuristic to topical, and from hubs of robotic activity in Silicon Valley, Boston, New York City (a new hub) and Switzerland to far-off places around the world: Turkey, Tel Aviv, Moscow, Christchurch, Reykjavik, Singapore, Shenzhen, Buenos Aires — essentially, everywhere that programmers program and engineers tinker.

by   -   February 19, 2013

I’ve read a wide range of reports and single-topic reviews about the presentations and about some of the exhibitors at last November’s RoboBusiness Leadership Summit held in Pittsburgh. I didn’t feel that any of those reports truly captured what I saw and thought. I was there for the whole thing. So what did I see and what do I think? What stuck in my mind?

by   -   January 29, 2013

Industrial Robots; Robot Arms; Cameras, Scanners and Vision Systems; Collaborative Cage-free Robots; Mobile Robots; Robot Operating Systems; Warehousing and Materials Handling; New Technologies, and Jobs

There are fewer manufacturers of industrial robots than one might imagine: only a little more than 200 worldwide. Of these, fewer than 15 account for more than 60% of the industry’s revenue. Thus, at Automate 2013, held in freezing-cold Chicago, KUKA, Fanuc, Staubli, Motoman and ABB all had huge display areas showing their uniquely-colored robots (Kuka = orange; Fanuc = bright yellow; Staubli = white and light yellow; Motoman = blue and white; and ABB = red). These industrial arms are able to carry big loads as was demonstrated by this showy barbell-pressing Fanuc robot transporting two very heavy train wheels and their axle from place to place.

by   -   December 19, 2012

The top 10 robots that could change healthcare, as selected by InformationWeek included the following:

by   -   December 6, 2012
Aethon TUG

Credit: Aethon, TUG

The Danish hospital Sygehus Sønderjylland is first in Europe to use logistics robot TUG, developed by the American company Aethon. TUG specially constructed for intern logistics is already used in more than 140 hospitals in the USA.

 

With TUG project supported by the Danish Technological Institute (DTI) Sygehus Sønderjylland seeks to automate the transportation of blood samples from the emergency department to the laboratory, saving staff time that can be re-allocated to improving patient care. Eventually, TUG will be assigned more routes and other things to transport at Sygehus Sønderjylland.

 

Read more

by   -   November 3, 2012


In 2006, Denmark created a fund of three billion Danish kronor ($519-million) to study how technologies like service robots can be used to replace manual labour in various public services.


Social robots recommendation
One of the first projects was a public debate all over the country about ethics and new technologies, started by the Danish Council of Ethics. After the debate, the Council publishing its considerations on social robots. The Council believes that the development of robots for use among people as everyday help, as entertainment or therapy is a development that in time will involve more and more ethical consideration, including some which are currently to difficult to foresee or describe. It is therefore important that robot technology is followed-up and commented upon from an ethical standpoint. Denmark became one of the first countries in the world with recommendations on social robots.



Therapy robots for demetia patients
In 2008 a study found that therapy robot PARO soothed dementia patients and helped them communicate. Since then the Danish Technology Institute DTI has become the European distributor of PARO and encouraged every Danish nursing home to buy one. So far Danish nursing homes have purchased 110 PAROs, mainly with public funds.


Robot suit HAL
Japanese Cyberdyne established its first European subsidiary 2009 in Denmark to start a consortium to win government approval for robot suit HAL as health care equipment and for the leasing of HAL suits. HAL is a cyborg-type robot that can supplement, expand or improve physical capability. The project was funded by ABT fund of Denmark Government (a fund for projects on labour saving technology).


First eating and cleaning  robot tests
In 2009 the Municipality of Odense started first tests with the Japanese eating robot MySpoon and a large number of vacuum cleaner robots was evaluated at care centers in three municipalities from autumn 2010 to spring 2011.


Social robot drivers license
In 2010 Denmark was first in Europe to qualify care personal with a social robot drivers license. The first International Certification Workshop with a group of participants from Spain, the Netherlands and Sweden was at the DTI, in Odense. The aim of the workshop was to learn how to use PARO but also to discuss ethical issues.


Robot suit test for rehabilitation 
In 2010 Cyberdyn signed for collaboration with Rehabilitation Center in Odense  for starting a project funded by the Danish Government to introduce robot suit HAL to a rehabilitation center in Odense University Hospital for clinical trials regarding worker augmentation.


Robot Learning
In November 2010 Aarhus municipal visited the Korea Institute of Science and Technology (KIST) for a presentation of robots that can be uses in English language education. In 2011 the City has entered into a robot collaboration with KIST to test robots at Rehabiliteringscentret Vikærgården in Risskov and in elementary schools in Aarhus – among other things as a help in education children with ADHD.


First Danish Geminoid
In 2011 the first Geminiod outside Japan was developed at Aalborg University in cooperation with ATR and Kokoro. The purpose of the project led by Henrik Scharfe, Associate Professor, and Director of Center for Computer-mediated Epistemology, was to investigate certain aspects of Human Robot Interaction, the novel concept of Blended Presence, and by studying cultural differences in the perception of robots.


Robotic bed

In 2011 Japanese Panasonic and the Danish CareLab at DTI Centre for Robot Technology in Odense presented the latest version of Panasonic’s robotics bed, designed for people who have limited mobility and need an extra level of independence. Panasonic has collaborated with Danish robotexperts to optimize the usability of this innovative robotic device. The expertise of the Danish experts has helped Panasonic to get access to professional environments in nursing homes, in hospitals, in municipals and research institutes in Denmark, and to get better insight in real user needs and technical requirements. This gives Panasonic a competitive advantage to reduce time to market and Denmark access to state-of-the-art robotics in real case environments.


Hospital logistics robots
At the hospital of Jutland logistics robot Aethon TUG is tested for use in Danish hospitals. These smart carts can haul supplies around the hospital, making deliveries and pickups at a fraction of the costs of human workers.

by   -   March 3, 2012
Travis Deyle, is a postdoc researcher at Duke and a recent PhD from GA Tech’s School of Electrical and Computer Engineering where he was a member of the Healthcare Robotics Lab and a frequent blogger at Hizook.com. Fortunate for us, he kept a file of 2011 venture funded robotic projects and turned it into an interesting chart:
Source: Travis Deyle, Hizook.com
by   -   March 3, 2012
By Frank Tobe, editor/publisher, The Robot Report

Travis Deyle, is a postdoc researcher at Duke and a recent PhD from GA Tech’s School of Electrical and Computer Engineering where he was a member of the Healthcare Robotics Lab and a frequent blogger at Hizook.com. Fortunate for us, he kept a file of 2011 venture funded robotic projects and turned it into an interesting chart:

Source: Travis Deyle, Hizook.com

This chart may not reflect all of the equity investment activity in the robotics market but it is a far cry from the $6.9 billion that went into 997 venture funded deals in web and Internet startup companies over the course of 2011. This chart also doesn’t mention the many acquisitions, strategic partnerships and mergers that occurred. The most recent is the acquisition of French Cybernetix by Technip, an oil resources and ROV service provider to the industry.

Deyle describes why he thinks VC funding for robotics is a tough nut to crack:

Robotics companies have large capital requirements for robot hardware, few potential acquirers, and almost no “Google-scale” breakout success stories (i.e., IPOs). One of the best known robotics companies, iRobot, has a market cap of just $700 million. This makes robotics a difficult sell to your typical VC firm.

Although these 14 companies represent just a sliver of the 100+ robotic startups that are getting funded in one way or another, they do offer insight into those that are of interest to the venture capital community. Of the companies listed in the chart, it is interesting to note that two are foreign and the biggest investment is for a robotic hair implant device for balding men.

VGo telepresence robot, Harvest Automation’s nursery robot, Liquid Robotics’ wave glider.
  1. Restoration Robotics and their new ARTAS System provide image-guided technology for hair follicle harvesting. It’s a massive market, hence the large investment. They received US FDA clearance mid-2011 and treated their first patient in August, 2011.
  2. Redzone Robotics was featured by Pres. Obama last year and, in addition to the 2011 funding, received an additional $8.5 million just a few days ago. Their wastewater systems – pipe inspection and cleaning robots – provide critical environmental assistance to municipalities, contractors and engineering firms. Again, a big investment for a big marketplace.
  3. Liquid Robotics and their wave gliders have been much in the news. They presently have four wave gliders traveling different paths across the Pacific and making their data available to scientists and lay people worldwide. Their gliders are valuable additions to the arsenals of scientific and environmental agencies, fisheries, aquaculture, pollution detection and resource discovery companies as well as defense/security and law enforcement agencies. Hence the large investment.
  4. Aldebaran Robotics, a French company, makes the Nao and newer Romeo robots which they sell to schools and for robotic soccer and other competitions to promote STEM education, a limited but growing marketplace, hence the midrange venture investment.
  5. Medrobotics is a Carnegie Mellon spin-off focused on surgical applications using flexible snake-like robotic devices for minimally-invasive procedures. Like other medical start-ups, there is a long lead time for product refinement and FDA clearances. Medrobotics has received funding in almost every year since it’s inception in 2005.
  6. Tibion Corporation, is a Sunnyvale, CA start-up, providing bionic legs for stroke rehabilitation. This form of robotic-assisted rehab therapy, therapy with the use of an exoskeleton, is a big step forward from the $300,000+ fixed-position machines previously used.
  7. MakerBot Industries, the 3-D printer maker for the DIY (Do-It-Yourself) crowd, and featured at Maker Faires held all over the country to mammoth and enthusiastic crowds, services the DIY, prototyping, small run, and hobby communities while more expensive 3-D printers support the additive manufacturing sector. The Maker Faire Bay Area DIY innovation festival will be held in May in San Mateo, CA.
  8. Harvest Automation has a lot of good things going for it: (1) many of it’s investors are the very same ag businesses that will be buyers of the robots, (2) although focused on nursery automation to begin their business, they are poised to broaden their scope into many other facets of the ag industry, and (3) the key players are experienced in the business of robotics.
  9. Orbotix is the developer of the sphero smartphone-controlled robotic ball. The ball has no buttons, no battery box, no socket or cord for a charger (although it does have a cup-like charging dock). Shake it and it glows; put it on the floor and direct it anywhere with your iPhone. It’s a Bluetooth-based, wirelessly-charged device first shown at the 2011 CES in Las Vegas. 
  10. ThinkLabs is an Indian education company focused on science and technology. It uses simple robots, sensor enhanced devices, and robot competitions to provide hands-on inspiration for students taking their courses.
  11. Precise Path Robotics began as an entity to participate in the 2005 DARPA Grand Challenge and has migrated it’s navigation system into robotic lawn mowing and other robotic devices to provide maintenance and conditioning robots for the golf course market.
  12. VGo Communications has thus far produced 2,000 telepresence robots and plans to lower the cost to near $2,000 in their next production run. You may have seen the ABC News stories about the high school student who couldn’t leave home but nevertheless, through the use of the VGo, attended the local high school, piloting his VGo from class to class and up and down the school elevator.
  13. Aethon is a Pittsburgh, PA based mobile robot company that makes robotic carts and tugs for the hospital industry tugs to pickup and deliver food, medicine, waste materials and general supplies. The company began in 2001 and has had many rounds of financing. This round of $1.74 million was less than the $2.5 million targeted.
  14. CyPhy Works, a maker of small unmanned flying robots used to inspect bridges and other public infrastructure, has also received federal grants and research awards to develop its technology for both commercial, governmental and defense clients.