OMRON窶冱 Future Vision Achieving Harmony Between Humans and Machines



FORPHEUS is State-of-the-art technology that embodies the world of 窶徂armony窶 where machines can bring out human ability.

You can experience the future of mankind and machines that OMRON aims through a rally.

The Name FORPHEUS Comes From

窶廡uture OMRON Robotics technology for Exploring Possibility of Harmonized aUtomation with Sinic theoretics窶.
A coined term embodying OMRON窶冱 robot technologies based on its unique future prediction theory 窶彜INIC theoretics窶.
It is also a combination of 窶廡or窶 and 窶廾RPHEUS (a bard in Greek mythology as a symbol of human creativity)窶, representing OMRON窶冱 attitude of bringing out human creativity and possibility.


Relationship Between Human
and Machines

OMRON believes that the relationship between humans and machines
evolves over time, in three stages.

The 1st stage is one of 窶徨eplacement窶 by machines of tasks that need not be done by human. The OMRON history mirrors this history, as we introduced factory automation, automated ticket gates, and other inventions.
The 2nd stage is 窶彡ollaboration窶 between humans and machines, which is currently progressing in the world. An example of this is a production line where humans and robots work together, each performing the most suitable task to increase productivity.
And now, the relationship is reaching to the 3rd stage, 窶徂armony窶 between humans and machines, that extends human capabilities. As machines become a more integral part of society, humans will enjoy machine support in a number of new and different ways that extend the potential of human capabilities. As with FORPHEUS, machines will emerge in every domain that can bring out human capabilities and possibilities.

FORPHEUS embodies the relationship that will exist between humans and machines in the future.
Every year, since 2013, a team of young engineers is assembled to develop and utilize state-of-the-art technology that keeps this table tennis robot tutor evolving.


Technologies of FORPHEUS

At OMRON, research and development is ongoing toward the evolution of its table tennis robot FORPHEUS, leveraging the company窶冱 core technology of 窶彜ensing & Control + THINK.窶


Enhancing team performance

The latest generation of FORPHEUS enhances the performance of a doubles team, as well as individual players.

Visualizing empathy and interaction between team members
FORPHEUS can now assess the level of empathy and interaction between the team members by analyzing the players窶 motions and inferred emotions, thus improving performance as a team.

Capturing players窶 expressions, heart rates, blinks,and movements simultaneously and in real time with six cameras, FORPHEUS analyzes the degree of synchronicity in behaviors and emotions between players to sense their internal empathy and kinetic coordination.

A rally that enhances the team窶冱 performance
To further enhance visualized empathy and interaction between players, FORPHEUS uses AI to determine the optimal pattern in which to deliver returns.

To elevate empathy and interaction between players, FORPHEUS determines the optimal return pattern, including speed, tempo, and course of returns during a rally. To realize the calculated pattern, OMRON has fitted this intelligent robot with superlative control technologies to increase the accuracy of returns and the range of motion.

Enhanced AI to reduce
human operation

The number of human-hours required for the mechanical preparation of FORPHEUS is now reduced to allow non-experts to play with ease.

Self-monitoring of mechanical conditions
Real time monitoring of camera and motor performance Sensing blemishes on the rubber surface of its racket, FORPHEUS now diagnoses itself

By synchronizing the robot窶冱 motions and camera capture, FORPHEUS uses camera images to sense the accuracy of returns and racket surface conditions. Performance of each part is auto-diagnosed based on changes in the images, changes which let FORPHEUS know which parts need adjusting - if any.

Autonomous control for consistent return accuracy
The latest FORPHEUS model features autonomous adjustment, which maintains return accuracy during a rally by adjusting returns according to changes in rubber surface conditions.

When it senses any divergence from a target return position, due to a blemish or other change to the condition of the racket窶冱 rubber surface, FORPHEUS controls the height and angle of the racket when it delivers returns to automatically maintain a high return accuracy.

Message from 7th Generation FORPHEUS Development Leader

7th Generation FORPHEUS Development Leader
Masamune Nakayama

We, OMRON, predict the arrival of an autonomous society based on the SINIC Theory, which is the compass of the future.

In the autonomous society, values change from products and goods to more mindful endeavors and from individuals to groups.

I thought there might be a "machine that connects people to others" as one form of " harmony between humans and machines" to show the values of the mind and the group when considering the development of the 7th generation FORPHEUS.

In particular, in the last two years, the influence of COVID-19 has restricted the contact between people, and the issue of "person-to-person relationship" has become apparent. Therefore, I believed that showing an example of a "machine that connects people to others" was very meaningful and worked on it.

The 7th generation FORPHEUS has made significant updates on electrical, mechanical, and software to realize "connecting people to others and unlocking the potential of groups."

It is our pleasure if you will be able to sympathize with the " harmony between humans and machines" that connects people to others through the 7th generation FORPHEUS.


Development Leaders of FORPHEUS

Interviews with developers about the history of FORPHEUS窶冱 growth