ANA Avatar Unites Tech Leaders to Debut the World’s First Touch-transmitting Telerobotic Hand - Medical Training Magazine

ANA Avatar Unites Tech Leaders to Debut the World’s First Touch-transmitting Telerobotic Hand

After much anticipation, ANA HOLDINGS INC., HaptX, SynTouch and Shadow Robot Company are to unveil the next generation of robotics technology. Incorporating the latest advances from across the field of robotic and united by the ingenuity of ANA, the teleoperation and the telepresence system will feature the first robotic hand to successfully transmit touch sensations. The innovative technology has been called the ‘Holy Grail of robotics’ for its potential to revolutionize the industry, making the upcoming public test a true milestone for ANA’s ventures in robotics.

By combining Shadow Robot’s world-leading dexterous robotic hand with SynTouch’s biomimetic tactile sensors and HaptX’s realistic haptic feedback gloves, the new technology enables unprecedented precision remote-control of a robotic hand.  In recent tests, a human operator in California was able to operate a computer keyboard in London, with each keystroke detected through fingertip sensors on their glove and faithfully relayed 5000 miles to the Dexterous Hand to recreate.  Combining touch with teleoperation in this way is ground-breaking and points to future applications where we might choose – or need – to perform delicate actions at a distance, e.g. bomb disposal, deep-sea engineering or even surgery performed across different states.

Kevin Kajitani, Co-Director of ANA HOLDINGS INC. Avatar Division said, “We are only beginning to scratch the surface of what is possible with these advanced Avatar systems and through telerobotics in general. In addition to sponsoring the $10M ANA Avatar XPRIZE, we’ve approached our three partner companies to seek solutions that will allow us to develop a high performance, intuitive, general-purpose Avatar hand. We believe that this technology will be key in helping humanity connect across vast distances.”