Japan's annual cutting-edge electronics and IT conference, the CEATEC, is currently taking place at the Makuhari Messe just outside Tokyo.
One of the innovations featured this year is a new robot car concept by car manufacturer Nissan. At 50cm in height and with a maximum speed of approximately 1.4km/h the EPORO robots can hardly be called a car demonstrator, but the small robots moving in a group of 6 showcase some interesting technology. The robots use laser range finders and ultra wideband communication to implement a swarming algorithm similar to that observed in fish.
Like real fish, the EPORO only relies on relative positioning which would allow the necessary scalability for such a technology to be implemented in real cars. Following an earlier prototype which could just avoid collisions last year and this year's announcement of the EPORO, it will be interesting to see Nissan's next step in moving these technologies towards commercialization.
Nissan's EPORO robots at IEEE Automaton