The UNI-CUB is the evolution of the U3-X personal mobility device that Honda presented in 2009.
|Left: the new UNI-CUB – Right: the U3-X presented in 2009|
The main features of the concept are Honda’s proprietary balance control technology and the 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, the UNI-CUB can be quickly maneuvered among other people.
The compact saddle-style packaging makes it easy for the rider’s legs to reach the ground and maintains eye-level height with other pedestrians.
According to Honda, “this configuration promotes harmony between the rider and others, letting the rider travel freely and comfortably inside facilities and among moving people.”
The omni-directional system consists of a two-wheel configuration: both the large front wheel and the rear wheel feature the Honda Omni Traction Drive System already introduced with the U3-X, which ; 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.”
A touch panel control via smartphone and other devices is also available.
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 famous ASIMO.
UNI-CUB – Technical specifications
- 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