IEEE ICMA 2023 Conference
Keynote Speech

Considerations and Introspections on the Development of Nursing-care Robots

Shijie Guo, Ph.D.
Hebei University of Technology, China
5340 Xiping Road, Beichen District, Tianjin, China
Postcode: 300401, China
E-mail: guoshijie@hebut.edu.cn

Along with the acceleration of population aging, the expectation to nursing-care robots is increasing. The development of nursing-care robots has become a hot topic in the field of robotics. At the current state of the art, most nursing-care robots are single functional products, each robot can only accomplish a specific task, such as transfer, mobility assistance, meal assistance, bathing, diaper care and so on. This is because the current robotics technology is not yet sufficient to develop multifunctional robots with practical application significance. Even though the robots only have a single function, they are still suffering from poor operability, inadequate service and insufficient safety, making them “promising but cannot be sold”. So, currently the practical choice is still to develop single functional robots that are convenient and effective for practical use. On the other hand, the decline in physical function of the elderly often manifests the loss of multiple living abilities. So, in the long run, development of multifunctional nursing-care robots is the trend. This report will first introduce the state of the art of the technologies and applications of single functional nursing-care robots. Then, it discusses the trends and core technologies involved in the development of multifunctional robots, and finally, presents the work of the speaker’s team towards multifunction.

Shijie Guo received his doctor degree in engineering from Tokyo Institute of Technology in 1992. He was selected as a distinguished expert by the National Thousand Talents Program (Long-term Innovation) in 2015. He is currently a professor at Hebei University of Technology and a part-time professor at Fudan University. He is the head of the Hebei Key Laboratory of Robot Perception and Human–Robot Interaction and the Director of the Engineering Research Center of the Ministry of Education for Intelligent Rehabilitation Devices and Detection Technologies. He also serves as the deputy director of the Academic Committee of Hebei University of Technology and editor-in-chief of Journal of Hebei University of Technology. His main social positions include Counselor of the Government of Hebei Province and member of the Tianjin Municipal Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference. He has long been engaged in the research of key technologies and applications of human-interaction robots, including robotic e-skin, electroactive polymer artificial muscles, nursing-care robots, rehabilitation robots, exoskeleton robots, etc. The intelligent system of robot skin tactile sensing developed by his team was selected as the "Innovation China" pioneer technology by China Association for Science and Technology in 2020. The piggyback transfer robot developed by him won the Gold Medal at the 8th China Entrepreneurial Design & Innovation Competition of Elderly Welfare Equipment in 2021. In 2022, as the principal investigator, he won First Prize for Science and Technology Progress in Hebei Province..

The Robotics Society of Japan Kagawa University Kagawa University The Japan Society of Mechanical Engineers Japan Society for Precision Engineering The Society of Instrument and Control Engineers State Key Laboratory of Robotics and System (HIT) State Key Laboratory of Robotics and System (HIT) University of Electro-Communications University of Electronic Science and Technology of China JiLin University