Honda’s all new personal mobility device : Uni-Cub (Video)

Honda has unveiled U3-X successor, Uni-Cub, a motorized cycle designed for easy mobility. It consists of a sturdy base, a seat and saddle with an omni directional drive wheel. The user can control the Uni-Cub by shifting weight and can propel it in whatever direction the user desires. Honda Uni-Cub will compete with the Segway mobility vehicle once launched.

Honda has maintained Uni-Cub’s height in such a way that when you are riding atop, your height remains that of an average pedestrian. Uni-Cub is designed for indoor use and is powered by a lithium ion battery and electric drive. It has to ability to reach a top speed of 3.7 miles per hour (average walking speed for humans) and possesses a range of 3.7 miles. The device will be tested in June where customers can get to see what this new mobility device is all about.

From June, Honda will be conducting demonstrations of the Uni-Cub together with National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation, Japan. The device will be tested for application both in Japan and in countries across the globe specifically for indoor use only.

Uni-Cub measures 520x345x745mm in length, width and height respectively. Wheels are capable of moving the Uni-Cub forward and backwards besides side to side and even diagonally. The unit can even go up gradients and barrier free outdoors and it is ideal for interoffice, intercampus usage.

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Honda Announces New UNI-CUB Personal Mobility Device Designed for Harmony with People. Joint demonstration testing to begin in June

Honda Motor Co., Ltd. today unveiled the new UNI-CUB personal mobility device, designed for harmony with people. Featuring a compact design and comfortable saddle, UNI-CUB offers the same freedom of movement in all directions that a person enjoys while walking.

Representing the evolution of the U3-X personal mobility device that Honda announced in 2009, UNI-CUB features Honda’s proprietary balance control technology and the world’s first omni-directional driving wheel system (Honda Omni Traction Drive System). These technologies allow the rider to control speed, move in any direction, turn and stop, all simply by shifting his or her weight. Since the rider can freely move forward, backward, side-to-side and diagonally, he or she can quickly and easily maneuver among other people.

Moreover, UNI-CUB’s compact saddle-style packaging makes it easy for the rider’s legs to reach the ground and maintains eye-level height with other pedestrians. This configuration promotes harmony between the rider and others, letting the rider travel freely and comfortably inside facilities and among moving people.

Starting in June 2012, Honda will jointly conduct demonstration testing of UNI-CUB with Japan’s National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation. In addition to testing the feasibility of using UNI-CUB indoors, this project will explore the practical applications of the device in a wide range of environments in Japan and other countries.

The balance control technology of UNI-CUB is part of the Honda Robotics family of technologies, which originates with Honda’s research into humanoid robots, including the world-famous ASIMO.

Going forward, Honda will continue its proactive research and development of next-generation mobility technologies, aiming always to offer more and more people the joy and fun that comes from freedom of movement.

Key specifications of UNI-CUB
Size (L x W x H) 520 x 345 x 745 mm
Seat height 745 – 825 mm
Battery type Lithium-ion battery
Maximum speed 6 km/h
Range 6 km
Application environment Barrier-free indoor environments

Key features of UNI-CUB

1. Omni-directional freedom of movement similar to human walking
UNI-CUB has a two-wheel configuration with a minimal wheelbase. The front wheel features the Honda Omni Traction Drive System that Honda first announced in 2009. The rear wheel moves laterally to facilitate turning. By leveraging the different rotational speeds of the front and rear wheel treads during lateral movements, UNI-CUB can move forwards and backwards, side-to-side and diagonally and also turn in place, making possible quick, nimble movement.

2. Movement in harmony with other people
Honda’s proprietary balance control technology makes it possible for the rider to freely control the wheels of the UNI-CUB, much as human beings maintain their balance. With a design that takes into consideration the rider’s environment, this system allows the rider to maneuver while moving side by side with or holding hands with another person.

3. Compact size for moving and climbing gradients in barrier-free indoor environments
Thanks to UNI-CUB’s compact saddle-style packaging, the rider and vehicle together are about the same width as a person when walking. Optimized wheel design and high-precision drive/balance control enhance UNI-CUB’s ability to climb gradients in barrier-free indoor environments.

4. Weight shift control combined with touch panel control
When the rider is using weight shift control, UNI-CUB’s incline sensor detects the direction in which the rider is leaning, allowing UNI-CUB to calculate the direction and speed intended by the rider. And touch panel control via smartphone and other devices is another convenient control option.

Honda UNI-CUB Personal Mobility Device