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Hubo Debuts as a News Anchor
HUBO, a humanoid robot developed by Professor Jun-Ho Oh’s team, made its debut as a co-anchor during the TJB prime time news 8 on May 14. “Un-contact" became the new normal after Covid-19 and many business solutions are being transformed using robotics. HUBO made two news reports on contactless services using robots in medical, manufacturing, and logistics industries. HUBO 2, the second generation of HUBO, appeared as a special anchor on the local broadcasting network’s special program in celebration of its 25th anniversary. HUBO is the champion of the 2015 DARPA Robotics Challenge held in the USA. Its FX-2 riding robot also participated in the Olympic torch relay during the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics. Click here to watch a full video of HUBO anchoring the news. (END)
HUBO to Present at the 2016 World Economic Forum
KAIST researchers will lead an IdeasLab on biotechnology for an aging society while HUBO, the winner of the 2015 DARPA Robotics Challenge, will interact with the forum participants, offering an experience of state-of-the-art robotics technology. Representatives from KAIST will attend the 2016 Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum to run an IdeasLab and showcase its humanoid robot. With over 2,500 leaders from business, government, international organizations, civil society, academia, media, and the arts expected to participate, the 2016 Annual Meeting will take place on January 20-23, 2016 in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland. Under the theme of “Mastering the Fourth Industrial Revolution,” global leaders will discuss the period of digital transformation that will have profound effects on economies, societies, and human behavior. President Sung-Mo Kang will join the Global University Leaders Forum (GULF), a high-level academic meeting to foster collaboration among experts on issues of global concern for the future of higher education and the role of science in society. He will discuss how the emerging revolution in technology will affect the way universities operate and serve society. KAIST is the only Korean university participating in GULF, which is composed of prestigious universities invited from around the world. Four KAIST professors, including Distinguished Professor Sang Yup Lee of the Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering Department, will lead an IdeasLab on “Biotechnology for an Aging Society.” Professor Lee said, “In recent decades, much attention has been paid to the potential effect of the growth of an aging population and problems posed by it. At our IdeasLab, we will introduce some of our research breakthroughs in biotechnology to address the challenges of an aging society.” In particular, he will present his latest research in systems biotechnology and metabolic engineering. His research has explained the mechanisms of how traditional Oriental medicine works in our bodies by identifying structural similarities between effective compounds in traditional medicine and human metabolites, and has proposed more effective treatments by employing such compounds. KAIST will also display its networked mobile medical service system, “Dr. M.” Built upon a ubiquitous and mobile Internet, such as the Internet of Things, wearable electronics, and smart homes and vehicles, Dr. M will provide patients with a more affordable and accessible healthcare service. In addition, Professor Jun-Ho Oh of the Mechanical Engineering Department will showcase his humanoid robot, “HUBO,” during the Annual Meeting. His research team won the International Humanoid Robotics Challenge hosted by the United States Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), which was held in Pomona, California, on June 5-6, 2015. With 24 international teams participating in the finals, HUBO completed all eight tasks in 44 minutes and 28 seconds, 6 minutes earlier than the runner-up, and almost 11 minutes earlier than the third-place team. Team KAIST walked away with the grand prize of USD 2 million. Professor Oh said, “Robotics technology will grow exponentially in this century, becoming a real driving force to expedite the Fourth Industrial Revolution. I hope HUBO will offer an opportunity to learn about the current advances in robotics technology.” President Kang pointed out, “KAIST has participated in the Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum since 2011 and has engaged with a broad spectrum of global leaders through numerous presentations and demonstrations of our excellence in education and research. Next year, we will choreograph our first robotics exhibition on HUBO and present high-tech research results in biotechnology, which, I believe, epitomizes how science and technology breakthroughs in the Fourth Industrial Revolution will shape our future in an unprecedented way.”
KAIST's DRC-HUBO Wins the DARPA Robotics Challenge 2015
DRC-HUBO finished all eight assignments in less than 45 minutes, taking first place among 24 international teams and claiming the USD 2 million prize offered by a US defense research agency. The Robotics Challenge Finals 2015 hosted by the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) took place on June 5-6, 2015 at the Fairplex in Pomona, California. Team KAIST of the Republic of Korea led by Professor Jun-Ho Oh of the Mechanical Engineering Department at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), Professor In-So Kweon of the Electrical Engineering Department, and researchers from Rainbow Co., the university’s spin-off company that builds the robots, won the DARPA Finals. The team received USD 2 million as a prize. The DARPA’s Robotics Challenge (DRC) promotes a competition of robot systems and software teams which seek to develop robots capable of assisting humans in responding to natural and man-made disasters such as the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear incident in 2011. The DRC consists of three competitions: a software-based Virtual Robotics Challenge which took place in June 2013; the Robotics Challenge Trials in Homestead, Florida, in December 2013; and the Finals in June 2015. A total of 24 teams from universities and private and public research institutes from Korea, the US, Hong Kong, Germany, Japan, and Italy participated in the Finals. The participating teams had to finish eight assignments in 60 minutes, during which their robots were untethered and operated wirelessly without communication from their engineers. Each team was assigned a series of tasks: they included driving a vehicle, getting out of a vehicle, opening a door, turning a valve, drilling a hole in a wall, a surprise task such as pushing a button or turning on a switch, walking over rubble or debris, and climbing stairs. Robots scored a point each time they completed their missions. To win, a team had to complete all the tasks successfully in the shortest amount of time possible. Team KAIST completed the entire course in 44 minutes and 28 seconds, followed by the Institute of Human and Machine Cognition (IHMC) Robotics in Pensacola, Florida in 50:26, and Team TARTAN Rescue of the National Robotics Engineering Center at Carnegie Mellon University in 55:15. For details, see an article below from the New York Times: New York Times, June 6, 2015 “Korean Robot Makers Walk Off With $2 Million Prize” http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/07/science/korean-robot-makers-walk-off-with-2-million-prize.html?_r=1 DRC-HUBO sticks a plug into an outlet for the surprise task at the 2015 DARPA Robotics Challenge on June 5-6, 2015, in Pomona, California. DRC-HUBO turns a valve in a clockwise direction. DRC-HUBO drills to cut a circle into the wall. Members of Team KAIST pose together after the award ceremony on June 6, 2015.
2008 IEEE International Conference on Humanoid Robots Opens
The 2008 IEEE-RAS International Conference on Humanoid Robots, an international gathering to identify new research trends and technology in humanoid robotics, will open a three-day session on Monday (Dec. 1) at the Hotel Rivera and KAIST in Daejeon. The annual conference is organized by KAIST and the Robotics and Automation Society of the Institute for Electric and Electronic Engineers, a U.S.-based international non-profit, professional organization for the advancement of technology related to electricity. The conference is expected to draw a total of 200 robotics researchers from 19 different countries. Prof. Jun-Ho Oh, at the Department of Mechanical Engineering who led the creation of Korea"s first humanoid robot Hubo, is serving as general chair of the conference. Prof. Oh was named the host of the 2008 conference at the 2007 conference held at the Carnegie Melon University of the United States. The eight-year old conference was inaugurated in Boston in 2000. On the opening day of Dec. 1, seven lectures will be given on diverse areas of robotics including cognitive humanoid vision, and robot vision sensor and sensing. On the subsequent two days, a total of 110 papers will be presented. During the conference period, a variety of robots produced by six local and foreign robot makers will be on demonstration, providing opportunities for researchers and industrial robot makers to share technological ideas. Highlights of the conference will be special lectures by world-renowned robot researchers Prof. Yoshiyuki Sankai of University of Tsukuba, who has created an exoskeletal "robot suit," and Prof. Art Kuo of Univerity of Michigan who is regarded as a leading authority in dynamic walking. Following the conference, all participants are scheduled to tour Prof. Oh"s Hubo Lab and the Human-Robot Interaction Research Center, both located at KAIST.
KAIST Collaborating with U.S. Universities to Advance Humanoid Robotics
Hubo, a life-size walking bipedal humanoid robot, is perhaps the best-known character in Korea that KAIST has ever produced. It was shown to the government heads of the Asia-Pacific region during the APEC held in Busan, Korea, in 2005 and appeared at the hit concerts of the pop singer Jang-Hoon Kim. The humanoid robot is soon likely to catch the fancy of Americans as a U.S. government-funded project seeks to create a Hubo that can work and interact with people in collaboration with Korean scientists. "We are going to give the brains to Hubo. (Japanese) Asimo can do only pre-programmed actions. We want to create a Hubo that can help people, interact with people," said Prof. Paul Oh of the Department of Mechanical Engineering & Mechanics at Drexel University in Philadelphia and leader of the five-year international project which was launched in November 2007. The U.S.$2.5 million project is funded through the Partnership for International Research and Education (PIRE) Program of the National Science Foundation (NSF) of the United States. It brings together world-renowned experts in humanoid design and information technologies. "Dr. Jun-Ho Oh"s lab at KAIST (that has created Hubo) is the world"s leader in humanoid design and the U.S. has advanced technologies in the areas such as artificial intelligence, mechanical learning and robot vision. Combining the strengths of the two countries can create a synergy effect and develop a more advanced humanoid robot," said Paul Oh. He is currently serving as Program Director of Robotics of the NSF which is overseeing robotics research (non-military) in the U.S. consisting over 150 robotics faculty. Paul Oh"s research team consists of experts from five U.S. universities -- Drexel, Bryn Mawr College, Colby College, the University of Pennsylvania and Virginia Tech -- and KAIST. Leading a delegation of six professors and eight students, Dr. Paul Oh made a two-day visit to KAIST on Nov. 18-19 to review the progress of the project and have a technical meeting with participants. "The U.S. universities participating in this program are scattered across the nation. So we decided to have a technical meeting here in Korea," he said. Asked the reason why he chose KAIST as a partner for the program, Dr. Oh said that KAIST is willing to open Hugo to international researchers, whereas in Japan only Honda engineers are allowed to touch Asimo, which is a humanoid robot created by Honda Motor Company. The project is to establish no barrier for roboticists anywhere in the world to pursue the humanoid research; a suite of humanoid platforms will be available for researchers to develop and advance capabilities like locomotion and human-robot interaction. The team has been initially involved in development of three tools, all of which are based on the Hubo platform, in order to kick-start humanoid research in the U.S. They are the Mini-Hubo (a small, light-weight and affordable humanoid purchasable at the price lower than $8,000), On-Line Hubo (a program to operate Hubo online) and Virtual Hubo (a simulation program to do researches in cyberspace). As the first outcome of the project, the Mini-Hubo is expected to be released in the U.S. around next April. Another important purpose of the PIRE program is to seek transformative models to train scientists and engineers to effectively work in global multi-disciplined design teams. To this end, an aggregate number of 20 students from U.S. universities are to stay at the KAIST during the next five years, with two students taking turns on a six-month term. "I was really amazed how much work is done with small funding here. This is really an excellent example to learn," said Roy Gross, an undergraduate from Drexel who has been staying at Prof. Oh"s Lab for the past three months.
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