Japanese Robot Astronaut's Departure Set for August
- First-ever Robot-Human Conversation Experiments in Space Planned for December
Tokyo, June 26, 2013 - (JCN Newswire) - Dentsu Inc. (Dentsu), Research Center
for Advanced Science and Technology, the University of Tokyo (RCAST); Robo
Garage Co., Ltd. (Robo Garage) and Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) announce
today that their jointly developed robot astronaut called Kirobo will be aboard
the Kounotori 4 cargo spacecraft scheduled for launch from the Tanegashima
Space Center to the International Space Station (ISS) on August 4.
Kirobo is one of two humanoid verbal-communication robots developed under the
Kibo Robot Project, a joint research project carried out by RCAST, Robo Garage
and TMC. The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) has also provided
RCAST and Robo Garage worked on the development of the robot hardware and
motion generation, TMC was responsible for the voice-recognition function, and
Dentsu handled the creation of the conversation content as well as the
management of the entire project.
After launch aboard Kounotori 4 within H-IIB Launch Vehicle No. 4 on August 4,
Kirobo will disembark at the ISS and wait for the arrival of Commander Koichi
Wakata in November or December. In the Kibo Japanese experiment module, the
commander and Kirobo will then take part in the first conversation experiment
held between a person and a robot in space.
Project Timeline (planned):
Aug. 4, 2013: Robot astronaut Kirobo leaves for the ISS
Aug. - Sep. 2013: Kirobo speaks for the first time in space
Nov. - Dec. 2013: Commander Wakata arrives at the ISS
Dec. 2013: Commander Wakata and Kirobo have their first conversation
May - Jun. 2014: Commander Wakata leaves the ISS
Dec. 2014: Kirobo returns to Earth
For more information, please visit the Kibo Robot Website:
Supported by people around the world, Toyota Motor Corporation (TSE: 7203;
NYSE: TM), has endeavored since its establishment in 1937 to serve society by
creating better products. As of the end of March 2012, Toyota conducts its
business worldwide with 50 overseas manufacturing companies in 27 countries and
regions. Toyota's vehicles are sold in more than 160 countries and
regions. For more information, please visit www.toyota-global.com.
Toyota Motor Corporation
Public Affairs Division
Global Communications Department
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