The Robot That Can Strike a Football at 200 Kilometers per Hour
The ED-209-looking monstrosity above is a robot developed by Castrol Japan that can take a free kick, and can apparently strike a ball at speeds of 200 kilometres per hour or more. Which is very very fast. Did you not see the video?
Castrol claim they were inspired to design and build the robot by Cristiano Ronaldo. Presumably because he’s the most famous name they could think of.
Charles Postles, chairman of BP Castrol Japan, said: “Cristiano Ronaldo kicks at about 130 kilometres per hour and this machine manages to get up over 200 kilometres per hour, so a new world record.”
It’s not really a new world record, is it Charles Postles. Because C-Ron is – as far we know – a human. Where as that thing is a mechanical monster. Also, one small question: Assuming the robot won’t actually be named in the Japan squad for World Cup 2010, what on earth is this thing going to be used for?
Apparently it’s not safe to be used to train players. So the robot free-kick taker can’t be used to test goalkeepers. Even though I reckon Gigi Buffon could stop it if he wanted to. Sadly it can’t be used to toughen player up with some intense standing in the wall to defend a painful free-kick practice either.
Which leaves only one option. Basically the robot will tour around as the World Cup approaches, draw a few crowds, and promote a certain brand of engine oil/lubricant. Interestingly, as SoccerBlog.com points out, this futuristic free kick taker probably won’t sit well with Sepp Blatter and his aversion to technology in football. Luckily for Castrol, this aversion will be counterbalanced by Blatter’s love of commercializing the World Cup for all it’s worth.