Panasonic to sell robot suits starting in September


Panasonic Corp. has announced it will start selling robot suits designed to aid human movement in farming, construction work and nursing care starting in September.

Each robot suit will sell for around ¥1 million ($8,100), the company said Thursday. Panasonic expects growing demand for such equipment amid the graying of the population and labor shortages in the construction and agricultural industries.

The Assist Suit AWN-03 is strapped around a user’s shoulder, waist and thigh. The battery can power the 6 kg suit for six hours.

Embedded sensors send signals to motors that automatically aid a user’s movement, reducing the energy required to raise the upper body, such as when lifting a heavy object.

Activelink Co., a robot development unit of Panasonic, will sell the product and is planning to start a rental service in the future. The subsidiary is also developing different versions for labor in sectors such as forestry.