South Korea's Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) has launched its Humanoid Robot Research Center on January 19 and opened it to the public. The centre will explore research on advanced humanoid robot technology. It is supported by the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy, which has funded the centre with ₩15 billion ($12.8 million) over the last five years.

Professor Jun Ho Oh of the Mechanical Engineering department will be spearheading the centre as director. Oh and his team won DARPA Robotics Challenge (DRC) in 2015 with humanoid robot DRC-HUBO. The robot won with 44min and 28s, completing tasks meant to assist humans during disasters. DRC-HUBO will be one of the focus of the research centre.

“I believe we have already achieved technological prowess through developing the HUBO robot over the past decade. The centre will continue to strive for further development of original technology crucial for humanoid robots’ key components,” Oh said. He added the centre will develop modular, open software to disseminate robot technology.