Japan robot can pick strawberry fields forever for farmer
TOKYO (AFP) - A robot that picks ripe strawberries as the farmer sleeps was unveiled in Japan on Wednesday, with its developer saying it could cut workloads by two-thirds.
The device, which can gather a piece of fruit every eight seconds, uses three cameras to determine which strawberries are ready to pick before darting out an arm and snipping them into its basket.
The two-metre robot moves on rails between rows of strawberries, which are usually grown in elevated planters in greenhouses in Japan.
It "calculates the degree of ripeness from the colour of the strawberry, which it observes with two digital cameras", said Mr Mitsutaka Kurita, an official of Shibuya Seiki which developed the machine.