Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) has launched an inspection and maintenance robot named Maintenance Equipment Integrated System of Telecontrol Robot, in short MEISTeR, for use in Japan’s nuclear plants. The MEISTeR has two arms and is capable of collecting samples or removing obstacles from a contaminated nuclear plant, where people can’t go.
The MEISTeR is based on Rabot, a machine developed by MHI and the Japan Atomic Energy Agency following an accident occurred in a uranium reprocessing facility in 1999 that left two workers dead. On the other side, MHI’s experimental MARS-D robot was designed as a nuclear plant inspector. With the combination of these two robots, MHI built its latest robot MEISTeR for nuclear plants.
The MEISTeR weighs 440 kg (970 pounds). It is 125 cm (approximately 4 feet) long, 70 cm (2 feet, 3 inches) wide and the measurement of its stand is 130 cm (4 feet, 3 inches). MEISTeR can roll around on four tracks and has two arms that can bend seven degrees and each arm is capable of lifting up to 15 kg (33 pounds). This robot can move at up to 2 kmph (1.24 mph) and is able to go on uneven terrains. The robot can be operated remotely. If various tools like cutting saws, jack hammers, and drills are attached at the end of each arm of MEISTeR, then it can do its work more easily and flexibly.
MHI will deploy MEISTeR at Japan’s TEPCO plant.