Apr 10 2009 6:21pm

Cyberdyne is bringing HAL to market (yes, really.)

The Iron Man exists, and he’s Japanese:

Cyberdyne Corporation of Japan, in conjunction with Daiwa House, has begun mass production of a cybernetic bodysuit that augments body movement and increases user strength by up to tenfold.

The HAL (Hybrid Assistive Limb) suit works by detecting faint bioelectrical signals using pads placed on specific areas of the body. The pads move the HAL suit accordingly.

Check out the suit in action:

But here’s the best part:

...according to Nikkei News, Daiwa and Cyberdyne are planning an annual production of 400 units and they should be marketed at approximately $4,200 US dollars.

Exoskeletons for all! Yes, almost five grand is pretty pricey for consumer applications, but not for commercial ones. Also, I could totally see a mobility-impaired person spending 5K on something like this instead of, say, one of those suped-up motorized wheelchairs if their disability still allowed them to operate this suit. It’s great news and I can’t wait to see one of these babies in the wild (hey, it could happen. I saw an Aptera rolling down Fifth Avenue last week).

However, I’ve gotta say: A company called “Cyberdyne” putting out a product called “HAL”? Really? That’s just asking for trouble...

1. madandroid
Is it coincidence they're rolling it out just ahead of the latest Terminator flick?
2. dcole78
Knowing the Japanese I would expect not. This is pretty incredible though. I am surprised the army didn't think of it first though. Knowing the Japanese the company name and the product name are both chosen to capitalize on the associations they create.
3. j m rowland
Earthquake and tornado rescue teams will need workers trained to use these suits. I volunteer.
4. Andr Drew
This isn't appearing out of nowhere "just ahead of the latest Terminator Flick". I first heard about this a year ago on Coilhouse.

Of course, back then it was all "we are juust about to go into production" and "you can rent one for 1000$ a month". Nice to know it didn't just vanish after the supposed production date.
5. AMLau
I used to live near Cybderdyne's headquarters in Japan. They have a huge exhibit in the local mall, but sadly, it was all in Japanese. The founder is a huge fan of American SF, including the Terminator movies, 2001, and read Heinlein and Asimov extensively when he was younger.

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