Showa Hanako 2: A realistic robot for novice dentists (w/ video)

Jun 30, 2011 by Katie Gatto weblog

(PhysOrg.com) -- Going to the dentist is something that we all have to do. Going to a novice dentist, and his or her drill, is something that most of us would rather avoid but they have to practice somewhere. Luckily for us researchers at Showa, a Japanese university, have been working on a solution to this thorny issue. They have created a robot, the Showa Hanako 2 that is able to not only mimic the kind of movement and gestures that a dentist may experience in the real world.

The robot is able to blink, flinch, sneeze, cough and gag, simulating some of the issues that a real dentist may have to contend with while working on his or her human patients.

The Showa Hanako 2 actually goes much farther lengths to create a realistic experience for the training practitioner. The robots mouth is designed to be as realistic as possible, down to the way that it feels. The creators of this dental bot got help from an unusual source in order to create that realism. Orient Industry, a company that is recognized as one of Japans top makers of sex dolls, was consulted to help the research team make up realistic skin, and mouth areas. The system is also equipped with a basic program for ; this allows the training dentist to carry out some basic conversation with the during the exam or procedure.

Like any good patient Hanako can give the dentist feedback about his or her performance. Unlike most patients however, she can store and analyze the student's performance, giving then a detailed amount of experience on the computer. The will be on sale in Japan later this year. No details about pricing have been released at this time.

Explore further: Robots and dinosaurs as Japan holds 'Niconico' offline gala

Related Stories

Disclosure of medication can save a patient's life

Nov 25, 2008

Do you regularly take aspirin or antiplatelet medications? Do you know whether or not these drugs should be stopped before dental procedures or surgeries? According to a study published in the May/June issue of General De ...

Recommended for you

The potential for robots to perform human jobs

Apr 20, 2015

Here's a game to play over dinner. One person names a profession that they believe can't be taken over by a machine, and another person has to make a case why it's not so future-proof. We played this game ...

Developing a robotic therapist for children

Apr 20, 2015

In collaboration with other national institutions, researchers at Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M) are designing a new therapeutic tool for motor rehabilitation for children. In this project, an interactive ...

Automating logistics for the factory of the future

Apr 20, 2015

Mass production and packaging in factories is already highly automated these days, but the same cannot be said for logistics. Movements of raw materials and finished products still depend heavily on manual ...

Japan robot receptionist welcomes shoppers

Apr 20, 2015

She can smile, she can sing and this robot receptionist who started work in Tokyo on Monday never gets bored of welcoming customers to her upmarket shop.

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

I_Dont_Have_A_Name
not rated yet Jul 11, 2011
Wow. I'm not okay with this. I like going to my on campus dental cleanings. The women are gorgeous, intelligent, and clean my teeth for cheap. Why the hell are these necessary?

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.