China is poised to dominate robotics markets far sooner than some had expected

Faced with rising labor costs, China is making a strong move to establish itself as the world’s leading manufacturer of robots.

The country is already the world’s largest buyer of industrial robots, but it’s lagged behind Japan, its perennial Asian market rival, when it comes to technology development.

There are big signs that’s changing rapidly. According to a report from the International Federation of Robotics (IFR), China will triple its sales of robots by 2018. By 2019, the IFR predicts that more than 1.4 million new industrial robots will be installed in factories around the world, and China will account for 40 percent of global robotics sales.

The trend makes sense...

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This chart shows Top 10 Countries by Robot Density.
A robot is a machine especially one programmable by a computer capable of carrying out a complex series of actions automatically. Robots can be guided by an external control device or the control may be embedded within. Robots may be constructed to take on human form but most robots are machines designed to perform a task with no regard to how they look.
Robots can be autonomous or semi-autonomous and range from humanoids such as Honda’s Advanced Step in Innovative Mobility (ASIMO) and TOSY’s TOSY Ping Pong Playing Robot (TOPIO) to industrial robots, medical operating robots, patient assist robots, dog therapy robots, collectively programmed swarm robots, UAV drones such as General Atomics MQ-1 Predator, and even mi...
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The Syrian military for the first time on Wednesday deployed drones supplied by Russia for its fight against jihadists, a security source in Damascus said.

Syria Deploys Russian Drones For First Time

russian-su-in the sky image

The Syrian military for the first time on Wednesday deployed drones supplied by Russia for its fight against jihadists, a security source in Damascus said.

“For the first time, the army today used drones received from Moscow in operations against extremists in the north and east of the country,” the source said, without elaborating on the type of drones or locating exactly where they were deployed.

In Moscow, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov declined to comment on the report, news agency RIA Novosti said.

The deployment came amid a Russian military build-up in Syria, over which the United States has expressed deep concern.

It also comes a day after a senior military official said Damascus had received new weaponry from Russia, including...

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Drone industry escalting at a fast pace in North Dakota USA

black stealth drone with cam image

The unmanned aircraft industry is growing so quickly in North Dakota that two Fargo companies almost signed their recent merger deal on a napkin, an executive said Wednesday.

Aerobotic Innovations, a software company, and Packet Digital, a hardware engineer, formed Botlink after executives from the companies met at a chamber of commerce dinner about a month ago. Shawn Muehler, 29, CEO of Aerobotic Innovations, said the companies were “very close” to signing a contract before dessert was served.

“Within a week, really, we got everything done,” Muehler said Wednesday at a drone conference held inside a hangar at the Fargo Jet Center.

The new company is building a platform meant to help drones stay up in the air longer while collecting and distributing real-time data through cellu...

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Alibaba trials drone delivery service in China

Up to 450 customers in three Chinese cities are receiving their tea via quadcopter (Photo:...

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd beat Amazon to the punch this Wednesday, by beginning actual deliveries-by-drone. The three-day, three-city test of the system began in Beijing, with deliveries being made from a single merchant operating through Alibaba’s Amazon-like Taobao Marketplace website.

For the study, quadcopters are being used to deliver packets of ginger tea to a maximum of 450 customers from warehouses in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou. Customers have been invited to volunteer for the experiment, each one of them receiving a single delivery.

Customers have been invited to volunteer for the experiment, each one of them receiving a ...

Collaborating with Alibaba is Chinese courier company YTO Express, which filed flight plans with aviation authorities and is otherwise managing logistics...

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Scientists create water walking bionic microrobot

The bionic microbot that mimics the water walking abilities of the water strider (Image: A...

Chinese scientists have developed an aquatic microrobot that mimics the water-walking abilities of the Gerridae – a family of long-legged bugs commonly known as water striders that are able to run on top of the water’s surface. The scientists say their bionic microbot incorporates improvements over previous devices that make it an ideal candidate for military spy missions, water pollution monitoring and other applications.

The robot has a body about the size of a quarter to which ten water-repellent, wire legs and two moveable, oar-like legs are attached. While the 10 long legs extending from either side of the robot’s body keep it afloat, the two shorter, centrally-located, oar-like legs powered by two miniature motors propel it across the surface of the water.

The scientists say that al...

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Iran has announced the first deployment of an unmanned aerial vehicle built to crash into targets, which the media promptly called the “suicide drone.”

Okay, so it’s got a cool name. Is it really a threat? The answer to that depends on how it’s used—and where it’s aimed.

Mobile Bomb?

First, the specs. The new UAV, called the Raad in some Iranian press, is basically a clone of the Boeing-built ScanEagle surveillance drone—an unarmed UAV that earns its way onto the battlefield with its eyes, not its talons. The Iranian version provides overhead surveillance for 10 hours, officials there say, but they’re also calling the Raad a “mobile bomb” that can strike land and sea targets.

This is not the first armed drone, and not the most dangerous...

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Japan invests in robotic workforce to regain it’s status as world’s leading manufacturer


Once the undisputed world leader in robotic technology, Japan’s supremacy in the field is being challenged by rival robot producing countries.

Now the government is pouring money into regaining that place to ensure the robot age starts in Japan.

Pepper is the world’s first emo robot and represents a huge leap in artificial intelligence. It can read facial expressions, voice tones and body language and then respond.

At Omotosando, an upmarket shopping district in Tokyo, Pepper works in a mobile phone store doing market research.

Pepper told one woman: “You’re very lovely – do people say that to you often? Now it’s your turn to compliment me! What do you think of my face?”

And then later joked with a male customer: “So you want to become Pepper? Well you’ve got shave off your...

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French police arrest three in nuclear facility drones probe

nuclear power plant in france image

Nuclear plants in south-western France where drones had been sighted. Photo: Reuters

Paris: Police arrested three people found in possession of remote-controlled drones near one of the nuclear plants involved in a series of mystery overflights by the unmanned aircraft, a source close to the investigation said on Wednesday.

Two women and a man were apprehended near the Belleville-sur-Loire nuclear plant in central France and two drones were confiscated, the source said.

Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said last week that France had launched an investigation after drones were repeatedly sighted over seven of power utility EDF’s atomic plants, raising concerns over nuclear safety.

The drones in question were very small, but police have given no indication of their exact nature.

French ...

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Laboratory of Killer Robots ‘Already Functioning’ in Russia it is claimed

Technician walks in front of a robot as it makes an entrance during the "Robot Ball" scientific exhibition in Moscow

A technician walks in front of a robot as it makes an entrance during the “Robot Ball” scientific exhibition in Moscow.

Weeks after expressing an interest in designing lethal robots, the Russian government announced on Friday that a new military robotics laboratory had become operational.

Oleg Bochkarev, the deputy chairman of the Russian government’s Military-Industrial Commission, told Itar-Tass that the new robotics laboratory was “built and already functioning.” Bochkarev did not elaborate on the location or the operations of the new facility.

In 2013, deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin, who oversees the country’s military-industrial complex, had announced plans to build a military robotics laboratory...

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robots Transformers_costume_characters_at_Universal_Studios_Hollywood image

While they may not look as sleek as these “Transformers”, Russia’s battle robots, which weigh 900 kilograms, can wield a 12.7-mm machine gun, reach a speed of 45 kilometers per hour and fight for up to 10 hours straight.

Russia expects to deploy battle robots to protect intercontinental ballistic missile launch sites by 2020, Defense Ministry spokesman Dmitry Andreyev told journalists Monday.

Testing of the automatic weapons system is currently under way, and is set to wrap by year’s end, Andreyev said in comments carried by Interfax.

Andreyev refrained from elaborating on the finer details of the battle robot, which he referred to as a “remote-controlled firing system.”

But Russia’s Strategic Missile Forces said in April — when the robots initially entered testing — that t...

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People ride through the smog in Daqing, Heilongjiang province. image

People ride through the smog in Daqing, Heilongjiang province. Photo: Reuters

This post was originally published on Mashable.

Chinese officials have announced the government is turning to unmanned aerial drones to help fight pollution.

The Ministry of Environmental Protection said the latest effort to enforce China’s green laws is already underway. Equipped with infrared cameras, the drones can detect illegal pollution from factories at night, allowing for round-the-clock inspection.

“Images sent from these drones have a 0.04-meter resolution,” the ministry said in a statement. “In other words, we can recognize a matchbox from 1,000 metres above,”

So far, 11 drones have flown missions in the most heavily polluted provinces in the country, including Hebei and Shanxi, as well as the In...

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