CNET también está disponible en español.

Ir a español

Don't show this again

People power

Rethink Robotics' Baxter is a low-cost industrial robot designed to help U.S. companies compete with cheap foreign manufacturing. The Boston-based startup is selling its people-friendly droid for $22,000, much less than the price of a traditional industrial robot.

Updated:Caption:Photo:Rethink Robotics
1
of 5

A watchful eye

Baxter can perform tasks such as light assembly, packing and unpacking, and material handling. It automatically senses a person's approach and can slow down for safety.

Updated:Caption:Photo:Rethink Robotics
2
of 5

Light touch

Baxter's manipulators can handle different objects moving along an assembly line. It will start shipping in October with a suction-type gripper and a two-fingered gripper.

Updated:Caption:Photo:Rethink Robotics
3
of 5

Easy setup

Baxter requires minimal programming to get rolling and needs only an electrical outlet, according to Rethink. It can be taught what to do with a graphical user interface, or by directly manipulating its arms, and will be able to use applications in the ROS family of robot tools.

Updated:Caption:Photo:Rethink Robotics
4
of 5

Reaching out

Working without a safety cage, Baxter can be freely moved around the assembly line. It's covered with soft materials in case it comes into contact with people. If it does meet a stray person, it will stop its motion to make sure no one gets hurt.

Updated:Caption:Photo:Rethink Robotics
5
of 5
Up Next

A tour of the legendary USS Missouri (pictures)