Humanoid Service Robot HERMES - History

HERMES - History

Milestones in the development of HERMES

Why the name HERMES?


HERMES in the news

Milestones in the development of HERMES
95/10 Analyzing and addressing previous work on the institute's transport robot ATHENE II and a calibration-free manipulator
96/04 Decision to build a humanoid robot instead of simply mounting an arm on a vehicle; search for a modular drive system to build this robot in flexible and adaptable manner
96/08 First design studies of a humanoid shaped mobile manipulator
98/04 HERMES presented for the first time at Hannover Fair (together with many other service robots); winner of service robots's race
99/08 starting work on multimodal command interface  (vision, touch, hearing)
00/04 Adding 4 degrees of freedom in the head (independent pan/tilt for both cameras), integrating multimodal man-machine interface
00/04 HERMES presented for the second time at Hannover Fair (together with the company amtec)
00/12 Adding highly sensible touch sensors to the bottom of the wheelbase
HERMES is successfully presented in the special exhibition "Computer.Brain" in Paderborn, Germany (a more than 6 months lasting dependability test!)

Why the name HERMES?

The name HERMES was chosen with respect to the robot naming "tradition" in our institute which follows the name of Greek Gods. Our first two mobile robots, ATHENE I and II,  were named after the Greek Goddes Athene. She was the Goddes of wisdom, war, the arts, industry, justice and skill, and has, therefore, been chosen as the logo for our university.

Hermes was the Greek god of riches, trade, and good fortune. Acting also as the messenger for the gods and goddesses, we opted for this name, since we wanted to develop a robot that was capable to transport goods from one location to another and to manipulate objects along its way and at start and end locations. Hermes also escorted the dead to the Underworld for Hades. Similarly we wanted our robot to help people to find their way in the sometimes confusing network of passageways of our main building, and to give information about the environment.

The name HERMES is also a good abbreviation to symbolize what it is and what it is used for: Humanoid Experimental Robot for mobile Manipulation and Exploration Services. Thus, HERMES stands for our project goals to develop an adaptable and flexible experimental robot that enables us to tackle and solve problems in the service robotics domain, such as exploration, navigation, manipulation and interaction with people and objects in semi-structured environments such as buildings to be at the people's service.

Did you know that the Greek God Hermes was also responsible for the birth of science and astronomy? He created the first alphabet and the first musical scale. Hermes developed weights and measures for grain and liquids, and also discovered that he could make fire by triwling a hard wood stick in a hole in the side of a dry rotten tree stump. Unfortunately, Hermes was the patron of trickster and thieves, as he himself stole a herd of cows five minutes after he was born. But this has nothing to do with our work! 

  • "Berichte von der Hannover Messe", April 1998, n-tv
  • "Universität der Bundeswehr München", Sendereihe "Campus", BR-alpha, 15.09.98, 16.00 - 16.30 Uhr
  • Sendereihe "Odyssee 3000", ZDF, 6.12.98, 22.15 - 23.00 Uhr
  • Sendereihe "Archimedes", ZDF, 23.03.99
  • "Wir in Bayern - Der Familiennachmittag", BR3, 06.03.99, 14.00 - 16.00 Uhr
  • "MaxQ - Lust auf Wissen", BR3, 15.08.99, 15.00 - 15.30 Uhr
  • Sendereihe "Globus", ARD, 17.11.99, 21.45 - 22.30 Uhr
  • "Geheimnisse unseres Universums", ZDF, 12.12.99, 19.30 - 20.15 Uhr
  • "MesseZeit - Quod erat demonstrandum", N3, 24.03.00, 13.00-13.45 Uhr (Liveauftritt!)
  • "Schaufenster der Welt - Messeneuheiten im Studio", ARD, 24.03.00, 16.00-16.30 Uhr (Liveauftritt!)
  • "MaxQ - Lust auf Wissen" (Roboter erobern die Welt), BR3, 23.05, 15.00 - 15.30 Uhr
  • "Lokalzeit", WDR, 23.10.01
  • "DAS-digital", N3, 25.10.01
  • "17:30" (Nachrichten), SAT1, 26.10.01
  • "WestART", WDR, 28.10.01
  • "ComputerNacht", WDR, 03.-04.11.01 (Liveauftritt!)
  • "News", RTL2, 30.11.01
  • "Giga", NBC Europe, 11.12.01
  • "Aktuelle Stunde", WDR, 16.02.02
  • "Welt der Wunder" (HERMES als Wunder der Woche), PRO7, 09.06.02, 19.00-20.00 Uhr
  • "Schwaben und Altbayern" (HERMES und Mitarbeiter des Instituts für Meßtechnik bei der Arbeit), BR3, 21.10.02 
  • "Welt der Wunder" (HERMES als Wunder der Woche), PRO7, 13.07.03, 19.00-20.00 Uhr

HERMES in the news
  • Die Kinder der industriellen Revolution. Messezeitung, 22.04.1998, S. 15.
  • Roboter statt Butler. Süddeutsche Zeitung, 30.04.1998.
  • Sonderbeilage des "Initiativkreis High-Tech in Bayern", u.a. in der Süddeutschen Zeitung und im Unicum Magazin, Juli 1998
  • Achtung, Kollege Roboter übernimmt! Bild-Zeitung, 23.03.2000, S. 5.
  • Roboter - Ersatz für Mensch und Tier? Evivo Magazin, August 2000 - S. 12/13.
  • Los robots están  cada vez más cerca de parecerse al hombre? (Sind Roboter den Menschen ähnlicher geworden?) Clarin (bedeutende argentinische Zeitung!), 30.11.01, S. 38-39