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FLASH

An expressive robot with a silver robotic head consisting of three spherical segments and eyes, on a electronics laden body. The robot holds out it's hand.
FLASH likes to make new friends. Photo: Wroclaw University of Technology

FLASH is a research robot capable of displaying different emotional states. It's designed to explore how people respond to robotic companions that can talk, gesticulate, and make facial expressions.

Creator

Wroclaw University of Technology

(FLASH originated another robot, EMYS, developed by EMYS Inc.)

Year
2012
Country
Poland 🇵🇱
Categories
Features

More Images

An expressive robot with a silver robotic head segmented head has a torso with electronics, and a wheeled base.
FLASH's face is designed to elicit emotions in people. Photo: Wroclaw University of Technology

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Overall Rating

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Appearance

Neutral

Did you know?

FLASH's head consists of three stacked discs and is capable of expressing a wide variety of emotions.

An expressive wheeled mobile robot points its finger downward.
FLASH rolls on a self-balancing base. Photo: Wroclaw University of Technology

History

FLASH was a social robot project led by Jan Kędzierski at the Wroclaw University of Technology in Poland. FLASH consisted of a wheeled Segway-style body equipped with a single arm, plus an expressive head. The unique head design, called Emys (for "emotive head system"), was part of the LIREC Project, an European research program with the goal of "exploring how to design digital and interactive companions who can develop and read emotions and act cross-platform." In 2018, Kędzierski founded a company to commercialize Emys as an educational robot.

An expressive robot appears to be moaning towards the sky as it has both hands thrown upward, one of which holds a stuffed shark.
"I found Fishie!" Photo: Wroclaw University of Technology

Specs

Overview

Able to recognize objects and faces, and understand speech. Capable of displaying happiness, sadness, surprise, anger, weariness, and disgust.

Status

Discontinued

Year

2012

Width
70 cm
Height
125 cm
Weight
40 kg
Speed
1.8 km/h
Sensors

Hokuyo URG laser range finder, Analog Devices inertial system, Microsoft Kinect, Logitech QuickCam Sphere camera.

Actuators

Maxon brushed DC motors

Degrees of Freedom (DoF)
51 (Arms: 7 DoF x 2; Hand: 12 DoF x 2; Head: 11 DoF; Wheels: 2 DoF)
Materials

Aluminum chassis, plastic parts printed in selective laser sintering and rapid-prototyping.

Compute

microATX board with Intel i7 quad-core CPU and Freescale PowerPC MPC555 CPU.

Software

Ubuntu Linux and Windows 7 OS with Gostai Urbi, FaTiMa, Player, Adept ARIA, OpenCV, SDL, Microsoft Speech API, Loquendo, PittPatt, and OpenNI.

Power

42-V 16-Ah lithium-polymer battery and 16.8-V 10-Ah lithium-polymer secondary battery, 2 hours of operation