Panasonic To Mass-Produce ‘Powered Suit’ To Enhance Strength

Panasonic develop powered suit to enhance human strength

Panasonic have announced that their “powered suit” will go into mass production this year. The suit, which will enable the wearer to greatly enhance their strength, will sell at the relatively reasonable price of 500,000 yen.

Netizens are excited by the idea, with some seeing it as a glimpse into the future role of robotics in modern life.

From Yahoo! Japan:

Panasonic’s Powered Suit To Go Into Global Mass Production For First Time, One Suit Expected To Cost 500,000 Yen

On January 2, it was revealed that Panasonic’s “Powered Suit”, which mechanically supports physical strength to lift heavy objects is to go into global mass production for the first time. They will also be on sale in 2015. Over a year 1000 suits will be produced, and the price for one suit is expected to cost 500,000 yen [approx. $4788]. It is expected that the suit will be used in situations where short-term operations are required, such as to help with disasters and within nuclear power stations. In the future, Panasonic will also develop a suit that can be used even in extreme environments, such as in space and deep sea.

Powered suits, which when worn produces strength that exceeds the limits of human strength, have been researched and developed in various organisations, including universities and private enterprises, however they have not yet been mass produced. Pansonic’s suit is equipped with an enlarged version of the lithium ion battery used in computers and smart phones, and moves via a motor. The operation of the suit’s arms, “grip” and “release”, is carried out through grips near the user’s hands.

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The development of the suit was done by Activelink, a subsidiary of Panasonic that works on robotics. Activelink successfully made a test product that is capable of lifting objects weighing 100kg, moving at a maximum speed of 8km/h, about the speed of a gentle run for a human, going up a hill of a ten degree gradient.

Panasonic will establish a system of mass-production for the suits in 2014. As well as partnering with major companies to sell the suit, they are also reviewing rental operations through a leasing company.

The mass-produced suit has a narrowed range of functions, adapted to transport heavy objects of around 30kgs. The plan is for it to go on sale with the name “power-loader suit”. The suit can move for around 2 to 3 hours on one battery charge. The arms can be switched so that they don’t only grip, but can also do operations involving hammering with a hammer, and digging using a scoop.

The development of a suit that can be worn under a spacesuit or diving gear is also on the horizon. Each suit requires substantial strength to operate it freely, and in fact, at NASA, whether a power suit can be worn underneath a spacesuit is being investigated. The completed product will be supplied to public organisations and research facilities.

Comments from Twitter:

別所今宵:

Want it want it want it want it want it want it want it want it want it want it want it want it (*^_^*)

ゆきねえ@ 福島:

If they made a slightly more lightweight suit and the price was lowered, then I suppose they could be specialised for use in medicine and nursing. It would be great if they’d reduce the burden for various specialised jobs.

ダイリーン@部外者の人:

If someone had told me about this headline 25 years ago, I’d have gone crazy, like “Wow the future is here!!”, but seeing it now, it just seems pretty realistic…

ta-kun:

This is great.

金色の夜叉猫:

I want them to make Gundam.

くれっち:

Amazing, this is the kind of thing you’d see in an anime!

とーた:

If that’s going to be the price I guess I could buy one、、、

めたん:

Amazing! And they’ve already been implemented? But I wonder if a large lithium ion battery is alright?

Comments from 2ch.net:

名無しさん@13周年:

Saw this in Alien 2.

名無しさん@13周年:

500,000 yen is cheap.

名無しさん@13周年:

This is good news for all those elderly rice farmers.

名無しさん@13周年:

If this progresses well it’s going to be pretty cool, huh?

名無しさん@13周年:

If it’s just 30kgs, hell, I could carry it.
Unless they bring out the 100kg version it’s pretty pointless.

名無しさん@13周年:

So they’re going to put out industrial waste huh? w
This is an idiotic enterprise.

名無しさん@13周年:

Poor kids who are bullied, women who suffer domestic violence, the elderly — wonder when they’re going to use one of these to kill someone as revenge?

名無しさん@13周年:

They should make a smaller one for use in nursing.

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  • The Enlightened One

    Looks cool but can only carry 100 Kg… meh…

    That’s not really impressive. I was hoping it could pick up and toss a car.

    • Boris_Da_Bengal_Tiger

      You know how it starts, first it is 100kg, then it is tossing cars and next it will be fighting of Godzilla and populating Mars. The good thing is, Robots in Japan don’t turn on their masters like Western robots do.

      • Zappa Frank

        because Robots in asia are strictly Confucians

        • Boris_Da_Bengal_Tiger

          It best to avoid a Hal/Terminator moment.

    • FYIADragoon

      If I’m interpreting the stats right, that’s 100 kg without situational limits. That’s not as awesome as tossing cars, but for rescue purposes that’s fantastic. It essentially has 100 kg of forearm strength.

  • PixelPulse

    Mecha Japan is becoming real.

    • Kiwi

      Next up: Magic girl

  • aaa

    NOW PUT MACHINEGUNS AND FLAMETHROWERS ON AND HAVE A TEENAGER GIRL CONTROL IT
    FOR REASONS

    • guest

      sadly those reasons were canceled

  • http://yoursexycousinrex.tumblr.com/ Your Sexy Cousin Rex

    Japan needs to produce babies not Gundams

    • A Gawd Dang Mongolian

      …so what about power loaders?

    • Zappa Frank

      Compromise, cyborgs

    • gig

      Sex is fun, babies are over rated. The world can not sustain them anyway so why bother

  • YourSupremeCommander

    I knew it! Pacific Rim was not sci-fi, the Kaijus ARE coming!! I am ordering one of these puppies in XXXL!

    • UserID01

      Please, please, please let organized, regulated, licensed, sponsored mech battles happen within my lifetime. Because if this becomes a reality, what with regional teams competing for a championship…

      Then so to will be the underground mecha battles which will be infinitely better than the fluff shown on national TV.

  • jd

    doesn’t look cool enough

  • FYIADragoon

    >Aliens referenced by one of the commentators
    Faith in humanity +1

    Japanese creativity and innovation is what should have been referenced when talking about what the world would lose if Japan disappeared.

  • Kiwi

    All this money and the only thing it can do is pick up a dumbbell with a pre-attached strap

  • soth3d
    • besudesu

      Thank you! It should be fixed now…I think that Yahoo! might have archived it.

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