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  5. New JIS as Safety Standards for Robot Services Established

New JIS as Safety Standards for Robot Services Established

Effort for dissemination of robot services in a safe and secure manner

May 20, 2019

Joint Press Release with the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST)

As a solution to overcoming labor shortages caused by an advancing aging society with fewer children, commercialization of robot services using guide robots, nursing-care robots or assisting robots has been advancing in specific public spaces, such as airports and nursing-care facilities. In this situation, the safety of robots should be secured for achieving the coexistence of people and robots in such spaces.

Against this backdrop, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) compiled requirements that operators of robot services or robot service providers should observe in operating such robots in a safe manner and established the requirements as JIS Y 1001, which is the first JIS in the service industry established under the Revised Industrial Standardization Act (New JIS Act).*

METI expects that industries taking advantage of the JIS will be able to contribute to dissemination of robot services and that new markets of Japan-oriented robots will be cultivated and expanded overseas if Japan files a proposal for international standards for such services based on the JIS and such international standards are established.

1. Background to the establishment of the new JIS

Current labor shortages brought about by an advancing aging society with fewer children have been causing significant challenges for all industries in Japan. As one of the solutions to overcoming this situation, industries place expectations on the introduction of robot services into society. A variety of service robots, e.g., guide robots, delivery robots, nursing-care robots and assisting robots, are expected to play significant roles in specific places where ordinary people and such robots are able to coexist, such as airports, commercial facilities and nursing-care facilities. In such situations, the safety of robots should be secured to prevent any harm to people.

Examples of services that robots coexisting with people provide

2. Highlights of the new JIS

As the first step to securing the safety of robots, in February 2014, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) issued ISO 13482, which are international safety standards that manufacturers of service robots are required to observe and were established based on Japan’s proposal. Since then, the ISO member countries have been advancing efforts for disseminating the standards.**

In line with this, METI developed systematic requirements on safe management and operation of robot services that robot service providers should observe in providing services using a variety of robots, standardized the requirements and established the new JIS Y1001: Requirements for safe management systems for robot services taking advantage of service robots. This JIS is the first domestic standards in the field of services under the New JIS Act.

The new JIS stipulate rules for risk assessment, safe management, education, operation systems, management systems and other actions that robot service providers should conduct in providing services using service robots for ordinary people in public spaces where such providers are assumed to secure the safety of service robots and take into consideration any impacts of such robots on third parties around such robots, which are situations different from those for industrial robots used only in factories.

3. Expected effects

Not only Japan but also the rest of the world need safe management systems for robot services that make use of service robots. The new JIS are expected to contribute to dissemination of robot services in a safe manner among people inside and outside Japan. Moreover, METI will strive to develop a proposal for making the JIS into new international standards so that Japan-oriented robots are able to play leading roles worldwide.

References:

Division in Charge

International Standardization Division, Industrial Science and Technology Policy and Environment Bureau