Valentino ‘The Doctor’ Rossi is one of the best motorbike racers out there, but how long until machines get better at sports than humans? Yamaha is up to the challenge and demonstrates the MotoBot.
If there’s one thing that we can see nowadays, that would be the rise of robots in just about any industry. There’s no Skynet level stuff here, but the reality is that more and more robots are becoming highly useful for most of us and the motorcycle industry seems to be catching up on those trends as well.
About the MotoBot
MotoBot is a robot that was created by Yamaha with a simple purpose, and that was to increase the overall results that it provides on the race track. The ability of testing a bike without injuring a person but while also having complete accuracy and control over it as a whole was a major challenge for the engineers working in this company, and this is the main reason they started the creation of MotoBot in the first place.
The great thing about MotoBot, at least for me, is the fact that it can control the bike and run it at around 120 miles per hour without a problem, which for me alone is nothing short of astounding to be honest. Of course, aside from that you also get the training wheels which are added in order to provide extra balance for those situations in which everything might go south, but most of the time this robot can stand on its own and run the bike as a human being.
Autonomous or controlled by humans?
The entire process is controlled with the help of six actuators that allow you to obtain complete control over the bike as a whole, in a similar manner to a biker. Unlike bikers though, MotoBot gathers his data from external sensors which are designed in order to capture all information and then feed it to the central processing unit of the vehicle.
Based on that info, the MotoBot can steer and control the speed as well as engine power or other functions, all while seeing any condition changes for the track ahead. The MotoBot brings in front some amazing results and the fact that it can control a bike on his own is nothing short of impressive. Of course, there are plenty of features that focus on safety as well, but the fact that no MotoBot was damaged beyond repair clearly shows how good this tech really is, and it can definitely get far for sure, it all comes down to how well it will be used in the long run.
According to Yamaha, they plan to improve on MotoBot and add in machine learning capabilities as well as other interesting systems which is really interesting. Adding in artificial intelligence will offer this robot the ability to understand and learn even the more complicated roads, but this will require some time for implementing though.
I feel that MotoBot has a ton of potential and it already does an amazing job at all times. It’s a very helpful innovation focused on safety and it does bring in front a whole bunch of great results. This is a great piece of engineering, and I for one can’t wait to see what it will bring in front for the future.
For more information and photos check out the official Yamaha MotoBot webpage.
YouTube: Yamaha MotoBot Concept Video (Prototype Promo)
Photo credit: Yamaha / Moto Race Reports