Tag Archives: robot

Robot arm picks up (unwrapped) ketchup

Now THIS is what I like to see. Quite simply a staggering piece of engineering. Stop reading this and JUST PRESS PLAY already.

Came via the excellent WIRED.co.uk site, on which Duncan Geere writes:

A small Japanese company called Furukawa Kikou has built arobot arm that can pick ketchup up and put it down again without losing its shape.

You can see the remarkable process in action in the video above, with added mayonnaise too. The sheet, which is made of Teflon, is wrapped around a sliding plate, which is fixed on one end. As the plate moves out underneath, it picks up whatever substance it’s being used on.

It was originally built in 2007 to help bakeries get structurally-infirm pastries out of an oven, but has also found a job in the box packing industry — as Syoji Tsubaki, the company’s sales manager, explains:

“Until now, it generally wasn’t possible to transport materials in a sol-gel state,” he told Diginfo. “When a liquid pouch is picked or suctioned up, the liquid collects at the bottom. This makes the bottom bulge and the pouch loses its shape, so sometimes you can’t fit the specified number of pouches in a box. By placing the pouches in the box horizontally, it’s possible to arrange them automatically.”

We want one for the Wired kitchen.