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Announcement of the Winning Robots in the Seventh Robot Awards METI to recognize and exhibit robots with the potential to contribute to future markets

The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) and the Japan Machinery Federation (JMF) held the Seventh Robot Awards in collaboration with the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications (MIC), Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare (MHLW), Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF), and Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT). They hereby announce that METI and JMF selected the winning robots. An awards ceremony and a winning-robot exhibition will be held as part of the Japan Robot Week 2016 event.

1. Outline of the program

The Robot Awards program is an initiative for recognizing outstanding robots, aiming to facilitate the development of robot technologies and the expanded utilization of robots. Since 2006, METI and JMF have been awarding the METI Minister’s Awards as the Robot Awards to outstanding robots.

As the Seventh Robot Awards program was approaching, five new minister’s awards were created, namely, the MIC, MEXT, MHLW, MAFF, and MLIT Minister’s Awards, under the New Robot Strategy decided by the Headquarters for Japan’s Economic Revitalization on February 10, 2015.

2. Selection results

From among the 151 applicants that applied for the Seventh Robot Awards program during the period of the call from late April to the end of June 2016, a special committee for the Seventh Robot Awards program, chaired by Dr. Sadao Kawamura, professor, Ritsumeikan University, selected the winning robots of the awards through the examination, as shown in Appendix 1 (in Japanse).PDFfile(PDF:917KB)

A robot titled “Pick Worker as a MUJIN Controller,” developed by MUJIN Inc. was selected as a winner of the Seventh Robot Award (METI Minister’s Award). The successful industrial robot needs no teaching process to pick up targets in bulk.

Winner of the Seventh Robot Award (METI Minister’s Award)

 Pick Worker as a MUJIN Controller: Needing no teaching process to pick up targets in bulk

Title of robot:
MUJIN Controller PickWorker: Teach-less robot picking system
Developer:
MUJIN Inc.
Outline:
With the Mujin Controller PickWorker, users are able to setup an automated robot picking system independent of robot hardware in just three steps:
[i] modeling the 3D environment using CAD functionality of the pendant, [ii] registering desired grasps of the workpieces for the gripper, and [iii] specifying conditions, constraints, and goals of placing the workpieces.
Given this minimal information, the PickWorker system computes the correct collision-free robot motions in real-time and executes them to pick up the workpieces while automatically recovering from inoperable states. For the first time in history, non-expert users can setup, edit, and deploy advanced and intelligent robot picking solutions within several weeks.
Appraised points:
We appraised the robot controller for its contributions to solving real social challenges, like labor shortage and productivity performance, through promoting automation of the pick-up processes in the distribution sector as well as the automotive sector. The developer has succeeded in creating a robot controller with an intuitively-operable system using 3D graphics on a touch panel pendant, and an easy-to-use setup flow for capturing the essence of the picking task. Furthermore, the real versatility of the robot controller is in its integrated support for most robot manufacturers. All these factors culminate into the robot controller being an outstanding product contributing to a new generation of robot applications.

3. Awards ceremony and other information

The awards ceremony of the Seventh Robot Awards and other events will be held as part of the Japan Robot Week 2016 event held from October 19 to 21, 2016, at East Hall, Tokyo Big Sight (3-11-1 Ariake, Koto Ward, Tokyo) as follows. For details, see Appendix 2 (in Japanese).PDFfile(PDF:133KB)

-Awards ceremony

Date and time:
October 19 (Wed.), 2016; 10:30 to 11:50 (tentative)
Venue:
Main stage at East Hall 3, Tokyo Big Sight

-Presentations by developers of winning robots

Date and time:
October 19 (Wed.), 2016; 13:15 to 17:15 (tentative)
Venue:
Main stage at East Hall 3, Tokyo Big Sight

-Joint exhibition of winning robots

Date and time:
October 19 (Wed.) to 21 (Fri.), 2016; 10:00 to 17:00
Venue:
Special booth for the Seventh Robot Awards at East Hall 3, Tokyo Big Sight

Reference: Japan Robot Week 2016

Date and time:
October 19 (Wed.) to 21 (Fri.), 2016; 10:00 to 17:00
Venue:
East Hall, Tokyo Big Sight
Organizers:
The Japan Robot Association, and Nikkan Kogyo Shimbun, Ltd.
URL:
http://biz.nikkan.co.jp/eve/s-robot/

Release date

October 12, 2016

Division in Charge

Robotics Policy Office, Industrial Machinery Division, Manufacturing Industries Bureau

Related Information

Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry1-3-1 Kasumigaseki, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8901, Japan Tel: +81-(0)3-3501-1511
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