The latest robot technology on show

Mobility was a keyword at the world's largest robot exhibition, held in Tokyo.

The T-HR3 - Toyota's latest robot - is not only good at Tai Chi but can mirror complex human movements in real time.

Today it is being controlled by a human via a VR set: a 16 point manoeuvring system allows the pilot to control the robot remotely. Modules on the device directly communicate the pilot's actions to the robot, resulting in smooth and synchronised movement between robot and pilot.

The humanoid robot is 1.5 metres tall, weighs 50 kg and is made up of 29 body parts. Toyota says its aim in future is to develop a robot that can act as a mobility assisting companion in the home.

Another development is a wheelchair, which is capable of reading brainwaves, for example, to drive its user to their desired destination. The chair detects the users' thoughts via a headset. Once it recognises the desired destination, the wheelchair drives there autonomously but continues to read brainwaves, so that it can pause or divert as the user wishes.The developer is Professor Minoru Nakazawa from the Kanazawa Institute of Technology. 

Another robot is designed to help elderly people that suffer from painful joint movement get dressed.

More than 2,000 companies and organisations showcased hundreds of robots in the 22nd International Robot Exhibition.

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