We may not have had the wide variety of radiation-resistant robots we needed before Fukushima, but we're certainly getting them now. Following Toshiba's four-legged dog bot, Mitsubishi is rolling out their own four-tredded tankbot that aims to fix up a disaster site without sending anyone in.
Dubbed the MEISTeR for Maintenance Equipment Integrated System of Telecontrol Robot, this robot has two arms, each with seven degrees of rotation freedom. This allows it do things like hold and cut pipes and it can pick up loads of up to 15kg. A bevvy of tools like saws, jack hammers and drills provide utility. At nearly 453kg and just over 1.2m tall, it's a pretty big guy and moves at just over 1.6km/h.
The MEISTeR is full remote control, of course and can do its thing in highly hazardous environments for up to two hours at a time, cutting through pipes, crawling over irregular surfaces, collecting samples and whathaveyou. Here's hoping that by the next time some sort of dangerous disaster — nuclear or otherwise — occurs, we can just have the robots take care of it for us. [MHI via gizmag]