Written by Florian & Mayke
Today we had the honors of visiting the headquarters and factory floor of Omron Corporation in Kyoto. This was the first day that everyone had to “dress to impress” as we were visiting as representatives of the TUE and Thor. After a small commute we arrived at the headquarters with some help from our newly acquired friend/Omron-guide Mickey. We started our tour at the factory museum were got to know the founder of Omron Kazuma Tateishi and how he tried to achieve his dream of bettering society through technology. We got to see the very first touchless switches, automatic money exchange machines, and public transport ticket machines. The second part included a demo room full of Omron robotics which included a robot that could play ping pong with a human player. What really stood out for me was the work they were doing towards healthcare, especially for the elderly. They developed easy ecg devices that allow accurate measurements to be taken at home without any highly trained professionals present.
After the museum tour, the group split up for two different factory tours. Our group went with Mickey to the Katsuse factory, where we visited a production line hall out of many (industrial) engineering students’ dreams. The automation process got explained to us and we got to meet Ladybird, Firefly, Stag and Beetle, the factory robots that take care of the transportation of products from one line to the other!
In the evening we planned to visit the Nishiki food market, but unfortunately it was closed. This meant that the group split up between many different food places, from ramen to sushi and everything in between. I, Mayke tried the experience of Izakaya for the first time, Japanese bar food in a shared dining kind of setting, while enjoying a drink!