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NEWS Last modified on February 15, 2016

Introducing NAO the robot at Tokyo Haneda Airport

Nao joined the growing list of airport robots this week by providing Japan Airlines passengers at Tokyo Haneda Airport with information about flight schedules, security requirements and weather reports.

Japan Airlines started trials of the humanoid robot guide at Haneda last week and the tiniest member of its workforce will return to the gateway tomorrow for a three day stint.

And if he impresses Nao, who stands just 60-centimetre tall, could become a more permanent fixture at the airport.

Built by a French company, it speaks Japanese, English and Chinese and will be placed in the departure hall and security check areas for maximum impact. 

Only last November, Amsterdam Schiphol introduced Spencer, which could be found wandering around the terminals looking for passengers in need of help finding their way around.

Like 'Robbi' at Geneva Airport, and looking a bit like 'Brian' from Confused.com although he cannot talk, Spencer (Pictured below) is basically designed to help get passengers to their gates in time and reduce the number of travellers who get lost en route to the gate4e20c75ecde92eb607d74d526c668dc5 XL
The brainchild of KLM and built by university and corporate researchers from France, Germany, Holland, Sweden and Switzerland, Spencer boasts technology that includes 2D laser cameras, five onboard computers and a variety of sensors.

Spencer is essentially a new and improved version of Geneva's Robbi who made his debut at the gateway a couple of years ago.

And Robbi and Spencer are not alone in what is becoming an increasingly sci-fi world at airports as Düsseldorf has its own Ray the robot, who in effect is a high-tech valet that parks your car for you!

On arrival, all travellers need to do is leave their car in a designated area at the German gateway and confirm it is empty and ready to go before Ray or one of its cybernetic colleagues will then take the car to one of 249 parking spaces reserved for robots in a dedicated area.Ray
The forklift-like machine can carry any standard car weighing up to three metric tonnes (3.31 tonnes) and is fully insured.

To use the service travellers will have to pay a fee of around €30 day. According to the airport, the high-tech service is primarily targeted at busy business travellers.


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