Unitree’s H1 humanoid breaks world speed record, dances, and tackles stairs

Unitree Robotics, headquartered in China, has recently captured global attention with its groundbreaking H1 humanoid robot, which has shattered the world record for speed in its category. Known for its innovative quadruped robots that mimic the appearance and movement of dogs, Unitree’s foray into the realm of humanoid robotics with the H1 model signifies a major milestone in the field.

In a striking demonstration, the H1 achieved an impressive speed of 3.3 meters per second (11.9 km/h or 7.4 mph), not only highlighting its swift mobility but also showcasing a plethora of sophisticated features.

Launched in December, the H1 robot is notable for its considerable size, standing at 1,805 mm (71 inches) tall and weighing around 47 kg (104 lbs). It is engineered to carry payloads as heavy as 30 kg (66 lbs), offering significant versatility for a range of tasks. The design of the H1 is particularly advanced, with each leg having five degrees of freedom, enabled by joints in the hips, knees, and ankles, and the arms offering four degrees of freedom through the shoulders and elbows.

Unitree H1 Humanoid Maintains Balance
The Unitree H1 robot impressively maintains its balance and continues walking smoothly, even when subjected to kicks. Images courtesy Unitree Robotics

The robot is equipped with cutting-edge sensory technology, including a head-mounted Intel RealSense D435i depth-sensing camera and a Livox MID360 LiDAR module, allowing for comprehensive 360-degree environmental imaging. These inputs are processed by Dual Intel Core i7-1265U microprocessors in real-time, facilitating the H1’s ability to intelligently navigate and interact with its surroundings.

Since its initial unveiling in December, the original H1 model was praised for its ability to maintain stability and continue moving even when subjected to physical disturbances. However, with the introduction of the Evolution V3.0 version in a new video released on March 1, the H1 has significantly expanded its repertoire of abilities.

The latest version not only retains the ability to move at record-breaking speeds but has also enhanced its full-body coordination capabilities, as evidenced by its ability to dance, navigate stairs with remarkable ease, and perform jumps as high as a man standing alongside it.

Unitree H1 Humanoid Jumps
The H1 Evolution V3.0 humanoid jumps as high as a man standing next to it.

The performance of the H1, especially in executing standing jumps, is particularly impressive when considering that its movements are powered by Unitree’s proprietary M107 electric motors, as opposed to the bulkier, heavier hydraulic actuators used by some competitors. This achievement underscores Unitree’s success in harnessing electric motors to deliver dynamic, powerful movements, setting the H1 apart and demonstrating the potential of electrically powered humanoid robots.

The H1’s performance starkly contrasts with other robots in the field, such as Agility Robotics’ Cassie, which set a sprinting record but lacks the H1’s full-body complexity. While other companies focus on different robotic functionalities, the H1 excels in speed, agility, and coordination.

Unitree H1 Humanoid Setting World Speed Record
Unitree H1 Evolution V3.0 on its way to break the humanoid robot speed world record.

Prospective buyers of the H1 humanoid will need to exercise patience and be ready for a substantial investment, with a waiting period of three to ten years and a cost of US$90,000. This positions the H1 as a premium, avant-garde technology solution, ideal for sectors seeking to leverage its unique capabilities, and heralds a new chapter in the evolution of humanoid robotics.

Source: Unitree Robotics

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