As per the recent photo news, Panasonic's EVOLTA Robot finished his long journey along the '53 Stations of the Tokaido' from Tokyo to Kyoto, one of Japan's ancient thoroughfares, to cap an additional 500 kilometers to his mileage. After the two month journey, partcipants in this time's world challenge celebrated the arrival at the final station, Sanjo Bridge in Kyoto with the EVOLTA Robot or EVOLTA-kun in Japanese.
Watch EVOLTA Robot Heading to His Goal
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To celebrate EVOLTA Robot's arrival, the robot design Mr. Tomotaka Takahashi and the four EVOLTA Sisters who had been accompanying EVOLTA Robot throughout his journey gave speeches on the struggles for the past 2 months of his journey. With the audience, the team and a specially created EVOLTA-kun holding a wooden hammer commemorated the special day with a traditional Japanese celebration by breaking a Japanese sake barrel top with the hammer.
Two years ago, EVOLTA Robot climbed a 530-meter rope to the top of the Grand Canyon in 6 hours and 46 minutes. The following year in 2009, EVOLTA Robot finished the 24 hour Le Mans endurance race of 23.726 km and was subsequently recognized in the Guinness World Records for the longest distance covered by a battery operated remote controlled car. Two alkaline batteries were used for both challenges. This time's challenge had the EVOLTA robot running on Panasonic's new rechargeable Ni-Mh AA batteries. Leaving Tokyo on September 23, 2010, EVOLTA Robot stopped daily to recharge its batteries at one of the 53 stations of the Tokaido.
What's the Tokaido?
The Tokaido is a vital transportation artery connecting Tokyo and Kyoto built in the Edo Period with its starting point at Nihonbashi in Edo (modern-day Tokyo) and its terminus at Sanjo Bridge in Kyoto. The Tokaido stretches for 500 kilometers and had 53 lodging towns along the route in the old days, hence the name "53 Stations of the Tokaido." The attempt to move across the entire length of the Tokaido using the same batteries is a difficult task. From the steep slopes around the famous hot spring town Hakone to the long bridges and uneven pavement along the way, the 500 kilometer stretch has presented one rough spot after another for this small robot. Nonetheless, through the cheers and support by his many supporters, EVOLTA Robot has once again completed his challenge.
For more detail on the start of the event, see 'Cheer for EVOLTA Robot's Next Challenge.'.