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Quince

A mobile robot with a black base and four rotating tracked flipper wheels. The base holds electronics, and a single arm extends upwards and holds camera and other equipment.
Quince is packed with sensors and ready for deployment. Photo: Chiba Institute of Technology

Quince is a remote control mobile robot packed with sensors. It is designed to enter areas that humans really shouldn't be going to, like buildings after earthquakes and crippled nuclear reactors.

Creators

Chiba Institute of Technology and Tohoku University

Year
2011
Country
Japan 🇯🇵
Categories
Features
Testing Quince in Disaster City, Texas. Video: FURO

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Did you know?

On 24 September 2011, Quince entered the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant to help assess damage and radiation levels.

The robot shines a light downward as it rolls down stairs in a dark building stairwell.
The robot navigates stairs during a trial. Photo: Chiba Institute of Technology

History

Quince, developed as part of Japan's New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) program, was developed by a team of researchers led by Prof. Satoshi Tadokoro from Tohoku University and Prof. Eiji Koyanagi from Chiba Institute of Technology, with support from the International Rescue System Institute. A tank-like ground robot, Quince is capable of driving over rubble and climbing stairs. It was deployed to assist emergency responders in the search for survivors of the devastating earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan in 2011.

The robots base is seen in a camera view from Quince showing the inside of a reactor building.
Quince investigates one of Fukushima's nuclear reactors. Photo: TEPCO
An open suitcase houses a laptop computer and electronics. The computer screen shows the robots camera views.
Quince's operator console. Photo: Chiba Institute of Technology

Specs

Overview

Capable of carrying a variety of sensor payloads. Able to climb steep slopes and stairs.

Status

Inactive

Year

2011

Website
Width
48 cm
Height
110 cm
Length
110 cm
Weight
45 kg
Speed
5.76 km/h
Sensors

Six cameras, three-axis gyroscope, three-axis accelerometer, temperature and humidity sensor, air dust sampler, laser scanner.

Actuators

Seven motors

Degrees of Freedom (DoF)
6 (Tracks: 2 DoF; Angle of sub-tracks: 4 DoF)
Compute

On-board embedded PC and four motor controllers. External rugged PC for operator.

Software

Gentoo Linux OS. Windows 7 on remote computer.

Power

Four 14.8-V 88-Wh lithium-ion batteries, 2 to 3 hours of operation