© QBIT Robotics Corporation Electronics Production | June 11, 2019
Toyoda Gosei Invests in robotics service provider QBIT Robotics
Toyoda Gosei Co., Ltd. has invested JPY 120 million (about EUR 1 million) in Tokyo-based QBIT Robotics Corporation, a provider of robotics services, to accelerate development of a practical robot hand with tactile sense using e-Rubber sensors.
e-Rubber is a rubber that contracts with the application of voltage. It can be used as a light, soft artificial muscle for robots. In addition, when its shape changes from external pressure or other forces, the amount of internally stored electricity changes. With this property, it can also function as a soft tactile sensor that can sense minute changes in pressure with high accuracy, a press release explains. QBIT Robotics is a startup that develops systems centered on collaborative robots that work together with humans for use in the service industry, including food service and entertainment, and provides robotics services that can help to solve social issues such as labor shortages. Toyoda Gosei is developing a tactile hand that can sense the shape and softness of objects, a capability that conventional robots have lacked. By combining this tactile hand with the robot systems of QBIT Robotics, the two companies will achieve robots that can perform work in a more human-like way. The investment will give Toyoda Gosei a stake of 7.6% in QBIT Robotics Toyoda Gosei and QBIT Robotics will accelerate their collaboration with the aim of spreading the use of practical robots that can support aging societies with fewer children. As the first result of that collaboration, Toyoda Gosei’s tactile hand will be used in QBIT’s “&robot café system.”