History of Honda's Robot Development

  • E0 (1986)
  • E1-E2-E3 (1987-1991)
  • E4-E5-E6 (1991-1993)
  • P1-P2-P3 (1993-1997)
  • ASIMO (2000- )

History of Honda's Robot Development

E1 - E2 - E3 (1987-1991)

Building Human-like, Fast Walking Technology

To achieve fast walking, Honda thoroughly researched and analyzed human walking. Animal and other forms of walking were also studied in addition to human walking, and the movement and location of the joints needed for walking were researched as well. At E2, the first robot that could do fast walking was created, reachinga speed of 1.2 km/h.


Early prototype of the later models walked at static pace of 0.25km/h with a certain distinction of movement between the two legs.


First dynamic movement at 1.2km/h mimicking the human walk.


Thigh-like legs walked at the normal human speed of 3km/h.

Realizing rapid two-legged walking

1. Leg Joint Placement
Using the human skeleton for reference, ASIMO's creators gave the robot joint functions like those of the hip, knee, and foot joints.

2. Range of Joint Movement
For studying the range of joint movement during walking, experiments and analysis were carried out on human walking on flat ground and on stairs. Joint movements were measured, and these measurements were used to determine the range of movement for each joint.

3. Leg Dimensions, Weight & Center of Gravity Location
To determine the location of each leg's center of gravity, the human body's center of gravity was used for reference.

4. Torque Exerted on Leg Joints While Walking
To determine the ideal torque exerted on the joints while walking, the vectors at the joints during human walking and each ground reaction were measured.

5. Sensors for Walking
To "comprehend" the foot's movement during walking, the robot system is equipped with a joint angle sensor, a 6-axis force sensor, and an acceleration sensor and gyroscope to determine position.

6. Impact Force during Walking
With the robot, impact-absorbing material on the soles of the feet and compliance controls* are used to reduce the impact.

Realizing rapid two-legged walking

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