Nidec-Shimpo and German Bionic team up for iREX 2019

German Bionic power suit prototype featuring innovative Nidec-Shimpo FLEXWAVE power transmission technology to be showcased
German Bionic & Nidec @ iREX 2019

Tokyo, December 16, 2019 – Nidec-Shimpo and German Bionic showcase the latest outcome of their joint collaboration at this year’s International Robot Exhibition (iREX) in Tokyo. A prototype of the German Bionic intelligent Cray X power suit integrating the groundbreaking, high-precision FLEXWAVE reducer will be on display. It represents the latest stage in the joint cooperation between the two firms, which are leaders in their respective fields, and paves the way for further potential collaboration such as in the area of Smart Factory integration. iREX takes place December 18-21 at Tokyo Big Sight. The German Bionic prototype can be viewed at the Nidec-Shimpo booth in West Hall #W2-24. German Bionic will also provide demonstrations of its current Cray X exoskeleton model at iREX in the “Kanagawa Robot Innovation” pavilion located in West Hall #W4-41-14.

Successful collaboration breeds outstanding new product generation

“After investing substantially in its development, we are very proud to now see our groundbreaking FLEXWAVE reducer integrated in the German Bionic exoskeleton prototype that is being shown at this year’s iREX,” says Hitoshi Inoue, CTO at Nidec-Shimpo. The innovative FLEXWAVE 2-in-1 gear and actuator solution from Nidec-Shimpo provides an unprecedented combination of power and reliability in such a compact and lightweight form. It has now been integrated in a power suit prototype, for iREX. Hideo Yamashita, Director Japan at German Bionic explains: “To ensure our ongoing success, we rely on integrating only the best components possible in our market-leading active exoskeletons. Throughout the collaboration, Nidec-Shimpo understood our needs completely and developed this innovative solution, thereby underscoring that both our companies share the same commitment for product quality and precision. Having now achieved this exceptional outcome, it also paves the way for further cooperation in the future.”

Motorized intelligent power suit provides relief for the back

The German Bionic prototype being shown at iREX is based on the Cray X model – an active exoskeleton that, in contrast to conventional passive mechanical exoskeletons, is driven by electric motors. It comprises a human-machine system that combines human intelligence with machine power by supporting or amplifying the movements of the wearer. The current, third-generation German Bionic Cray X, which boasts software interfaces enabling connection to networked production infrastructure in the cloud, was first unveiled as a world premiere at the Hannover Messe 2019 in Germany. The intelligent power suit assists workers during the lifting and moving of heavy loads while simultaneously ensuring the wearer’s posture and lifting technique is optimized. By doing so, damage to the musculoskeletal system can be avoided and employees benefit from long-term health benefits in and out of the workplace.

German Bionic IO: IoT suite for exoskeletons

The innovative German Bionic IO cloud platform unites the most robust exoskeleton hardware currently available with the latest IoT technology, enabling seamless integration into Smart Factory and warehouse environments. Alongside wireless software updates (OTA) and preventative maintenance, the system provides constantly updated system KPIs that can be accessed in individually configurable dashboards. Specific user needs, such as identification management or localization, are supported by German Bionic IO apps.

Solution for logistics facilities.

With S-CART Automated Guided Vehicles (AGV) from Nidec-Shimpo, logistics/factory users can utilize S-CART AGVs to move heavy loading pallets from A to B in logistics facilities, and Cray X wearers to operate manual palletizing and depalletizing processes. This will resolve the restriction that AGV cannot be loaded by fork lifter, due to its loading limitations. In this way the tasks are not only conducted with the maximum of efficiency, they are also undertaken in a manner that protects the health of workers engaged in the heavy lifting – thereby preventing potential musculoskeletal injuries and subsequent follow-on effects including worker sick leave and lost production time.

German Bionic and Nidec-Shimpo will be at iREX 2019, which takes place at Tokyo Big Sight December 18-21. The German Bionic prototype featuring the Nidec-Shimpo FLEXWAVE 2-in- 1 gear and actuator will be shown at the Nidec-Shimpo booth in West Hall #W2-24. In addition, demonstrations of the current German Bionic Cray X exoskeleton will be given in the “Kanagawa Robot Innovation” pavilion located in West Hall #W4-41-14.


About Nidec-Shimpo
Nidec-Shimpo Corporation, headquartered in Kyoto, is a manufacturer that produced the first continuously variable transmission (CVT) for commercial use in Japan in 1952. Its servo motor gearbox has the No.1 market share in Japan, and electric pottery wheel for ceramics has the top share in the world. Recently, we have taken our steps to produce the gears for robotic applications. This time, Nidec-Shimpo Corporation is providing German Bionic with the super flat actuator : a combination of a high-precision flat gear for robotic application and a super flat motor. We continue to provide all kinds of precision gearing solutions to the world. .

About German Bionic
German Bionic, located in Augsburg, Berlin and Tokyo, is the first European manufacturer to develop and produce exoskeletons for use in industrial production. Exoskeletons are human- machine systems that combine human intelligence with machine power by supporting or amplifying the movements of the wearer. The German Bionic team is also committed to researching the role of humans in industry 4.0. Learn more about German Bionic, its products and the minds behind the company at:

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