Toshiba's New Robot Cleaner Comes With 27 Sensors

Aug 24, 2014
Mami Akasaka, Nikkei Technology Online
The "Torneo Robo" robot cleaner
The "Torneo Robo" robot cleaner
[Click to enlarge image]
The robot collecting dust with its "side arm brushes" with long bristles
The robot collecting dust with its "side arm brushes" with long bristles
[Click to enlarge image]
The charging dock for the "VC-RCX1" and "VC-RVD1" is equipped with the "dust station."
The charging dock for the "VC-RCX1" and "VC-RVD1" is equipped with the "dust station."
[Click to enlarge image]

Toshiba Lifestyle Products & Services Corp will start to release three models of the "Torneo Robo" robot cleaner equipped with 27 sensors including infrared and ultrasound sensors in late September 2014.

It accurately detects the locations of obstacles, walls, etc in a room and cleans the room by selecting from 70 or more behavioral patterns to reduce the amount of dust left unremoved.

The ultrasound sensor is used to detect obstacles, walls and furniture located in front of the robot while the infrared sensors enable to detect glass objects and blackish furniture and walls, which often cannot be detected by infrared sensors. Also, with the infrared sensors on the sides of the robot, it keeps an almost constant distance (2cm or less) from a wall and removes dust near the wall.

Moreover, by using sensors, the robot cleaner avoids a height difference of 7cm or more (to avoid a fall) and estimates its travel distance.

This time, Toshiba Lifestyle Products & Services increased the length of the brush bristles attached to the right and left sides of the cleaner by 24mm, compared with its previous product, so that more dust near a wall, in a corner and around furniture can be collected. And the company installed the shafts of the brushes near the bottom and periphery of the robot so that the brushes reach to walls.

At each corner of the room, where dust tends to accumulate, the robot stops for about three seconds and, then, moves from side to side to intensively clean the spot. The brushes, which are usually protruding from the sides, are pulled into the body when they hit an obstacle.

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