February 24, 2011
First Robot Marathon Started In Japan
The world's first full-length marathon for two-legged robots started on Thursday as toy-sized humanoids started their run of 26 miles in four days.
The machines began the non-stop race on a 109-yard indoor track in the western city of Osaka.
The bipedal robots must complete 423 laps to reach their goal.
Vstone Co., a robot technology firm based in Osaka, organized the "Robo Mara Full" race in cooperation with the Osaka prefectural government.
Competitors are allowed to change batteries and the so-called servomotors, which control the robots' speed and other functions.
Robovie-PC from Vstone led the race at the start. Video footage from a camera in its head can be seen on Ustream, a video broadcasting site.
Organizers of the event say they expect the race to be won by the robot that can withstand the most wear and tear.
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