Yukai to Release ‘Robotic Creatures Kit’ for NHK Enterprise’s Elementary Kids RoboCon

2019/7/25 News

Workshop at Science Museum (7/20-8/6) to offer chance for all interested children
and families to play with kit in advance of contest.

Components of the robot kit (left) and some examples of robotic “creatures” that one could make with the kit (right).

Yukai Engineering is pleased to announce it will soon release the “Yukai-na (fun) Robotic Creatures Kit,” which they developed exclusively for use in NHK Enterprise’s “Elementary Kids RoboCon” scheduled for March 2020. In advance of the scheduled fall 2019 market release of the kit, children will have an opportunity to play with the kit from July 20 through Aug. 6 when visiting the Science Museum in Tokyo for “RoboCon Experience Museum Season 3.” The workshop is hosted by NHK Enterprise.

Founded in 1988, NHK Enterprise’s RoboCon is a competition series in which children of all ages can show off their ingenuity in creating unique robots. The series offers several different types of competitions, including High School RoboCon, NHK Students’ RoboCon and ABU RoboCon. Yukai’s new kit will be used in “Elementary Kids RoboCon,” a highly anticipated new contest set to begin in March 2020. Contest applicants may use the kit to create their submissions for prequalification. The submission guidelines are expected to be released this fall.

We created the robot kit, so elementary-age children could easily build robots by themselves. The kit is designed to enable children to unleash their inner engineers and create innovative robots from their original ideas.

For those who cannot make it to the Science Museum’s event, there will be additional opportunities to play with the new Yukai Robotic Creatures Kit later this summer, as we are planning some workshops on the kit. (Please see the event list at the bottom of this page for the details.)


Story behind ‘Yukai-na Robotic Creatures Kit’

The new robotic kit reflects our wish to spark an interest in children to make things with their own hands and from their original ideas. We wanted to create a kit with easy-to-handle components, such as switches, so young children can understand how robots are made. We hope this kit will help children imagine what’s possible with robotics.


In the process of developing the kit, we paid extra-attention to the following:

1. Robot made with cable ties?
You can use cable ties to create a robot’s arms and legs. To encourage children to use the most basic items to create a robot, we intentionally excluded tires from the kit. Once children have learned how to make a robot that walks by simply wrapping cable ties around a motor, they can apply the knowledge to create their original robots.

2. Simple structure!
When using this kit, you’ll be making a circuit with only three components: a motor, battery and switch. This enables children to apply what they learned in their science classes for robot making. This way, children can explore their ideas more freely.

3. Room for originality!
There is no right or wrong in making robotic creatures. While using the same components in the kit, two children could end up with two vastly different robots. We designed the kit with this “room for originality” in mind.


Check out this video to see how Yukai-na Robotic Creatures Kit works!

▶︎ https://youtu.be/Mw-s7toVVHk


Events to Experience Yukai-na Robotic Creatures Kit

“RoboCon Experience Museum Season 3” (Summer robotic workshop)
WHERE: Science Museum, 2nd floor
WHEN: Saturday, July 20. through Tuesday, Aug. 6
Morning workshop: 10:00-12:45
Afternoon workshop: 13:45-16:30
Reservation: Required

Free Research Lab (Family workshop)
WHEN: Sunday, July 28, 12:30-17:30
WHERE: Plug and Play Shibuya

Maker Faire Tokyo 2019 (includes pre-sale of the kit)
WHEN: Saturday, Aug. 3, (12:00-19:00), Sunday, Aug. 4 (10:00-18:00)
WHERE: Tokyo Big Sight, West 3 & 4, Yukai Engineering booth: E02-09

Workshop: ‘Let’s make yukai-na robots’
(Summer family workshop for beginners without programming knowledge)
WHEN: Sunday, Aug. 18, 13:00-16:30
WHERE: Yukai Engineering Inc.
※Registration is closed.

Workshop: ‘Let’s make yukai-na robots’
(Yukai Engineering Inc.×Mercedes me Tokyo NEXT DOOR)
WHEN: Saturday, Aug. 24 (13:30-15:30)
WHERE: Mercedes me Tokyo (Roppongi 3-7-10, Minato-ku, Tokyo)