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Japan Surrendering Moon To Robots

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The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency imagines a future where humanoid robots populate a lunar base in 2025.

When the invasion of Earth begins, we won’t have to look farther than our closest neighbor in the solar system for the source.

Unless of course, all goes well with JAXA’s plan to have highly advanced versions of modern-day humanoid robots working from a lunar base, constructing telescopes and digging for minerals.

According to PC World Australia, the agency’s plan falls in line with that announced by US President George W. Bush, who wants to see America and its partner nations build a lunar base by 2020.

Japan’s space agency has developed a 20-year plan, intended to help fulfill that mission. JAXA president Keiji Tachikawa, the former president of Japanese top mobile operator NTT DoCoMo, drew up the plan, known as JAXA Vision 2025.

Mr. Tachikawa envisions future versions of robotic technology in use in industrial settings today as being part of the lunar base construction. When that has been completed, new versions of humanoid robots will occupy the base and undertake the tasks that are too hazardous for humans.

“I see a big role for Japan’s robotics technologies on the moon,” Mr. Tachikawa said. “Japanese robots will be one of our big contributions. If there is work where robots can replace humans, they will.”

Those robots will likely be future versions of modern-day counterparts like Honda’s Asimo and Sony’s Qrio. Qrio, the next generation of robots developed after the Aibo, serves as Sony’s corporate “ambassador.”

Asimo has been around in various forms since 1986. Its name means “legs also” and is pronounced ‘ashimo’; the name isn’t an intentional homage to legendary writer Isaac Asimov.

David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business. Email him here.

Japan Surrendering Moon To Robots
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