evolta robot competes in ironman triathlon challenge evolta robot competes in ironman triathlon challenge
sep 16, 2011

evolta robot competes in ironman triathlon challenge

panasonic’s ‘evolta robot’ will swim, bike, and run its way through the 230-kilometer (142-mile) ironman triathlon

panasonic has just announced its plans to compete the evolta robot in the 230-kilometer (142 mile) ironman triathlon in hawaii, as the robot’s fourth world challenge. the race entails a 3.8-kilometer swim in open ocean, a 180.2-km bicycle segment through volcanic rocks, and a 42.2-kilometer run through central kona, each completed by a slightly modified version of the robot, which is powered by 3 rechargeable evolta batteries.

standing 7-inches tall, the robot team will have one week to complete the challenge, during which it will stop its progress only to recharge. human competitors have a time limit of 17 hours, but panasonic reasoned that since the evolta is 1/10th the size of a person, it should get ten times the number of hours to complete the course.

evolta robots have undertaken extreme conditions before in the annual challenge, but this is the first time that one has been designed to swim. by experimentation, an overhand front crawl technique was selected to convert energy into maximum propulsion with minimal battery loss. the extension to the robot’s body provides buoyancy, but all power is generated via its arm movement.

even in the bicycling and running segments, however, the developers note that this challenge is the most difficult yet, owing to the strong sun and intense ocean winds of the island, coupled with technical difficulties such as the robots’ ability to navigate differences in road height and sidewalks during its journey. tomataka takahashi, lead developer of the robots, notes that engineers tested a series of motors and then sought a balance between power and durability.

the ‘bike evolta robot’

the ‘swim evolta robot’ performing the front crawl

rendering of all three specially ‘trained’ robots

the robots’ developer tomotaka takahashi discusses the world challenge IV, and demos the robot’s swimming technique (beginning at 4:16)

via plastic pals

design-aerobics 2011: TECH GADGETS course september 15 – november 15, 2011 as more and more technological objects find their way into everyday life

designboom will hold an online design course on the theme of ‘tech-gadgets’. we’ll look at the most significant designs yet and ponder what might be around the corner. to see a lesson sample and information on how to enroll click here.

classes have just begun, but you can still register and participate– once you’re enrolled, you can view the lessons at any time for the length of the course!

    have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.

    comments policy
    LOG IN
    designboom's comment policy guidelines
    generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
    the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

    what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
    let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

    - please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
    - please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
    - please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
    - please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
    - please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
    (there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
    in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
    the best 100-200 entries too.)

    a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.

    PRODUCT LIBRARY

    a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

    technology news