This is the elusive Heathkit HERO 2000 robot with installed arm and arm controller card. This robot, is one of only a few thousand the company produced in the mid-1980s. It was the robot of the future—the most advanced personal/educational robot in the world.
The HERO 2000 Robot was the centerpiece of a total learning system designed to teach students and industrial workers the concepts of automation and robotics. It could do more, and do it faster, more efficiently, and more accurately than any other training robot on the market. Compared to the others, the HERO 2000 was in a class by itself.
HERO 2000 is 32 inches tall and, with battery installed, weighs 78 lbs. A 16-bit 8088 master processor controls all its operating systems. Also featured are eleven 8-bit slave microprocessors with specially enhanced BASIC as well as demonstration programs (including siren and phasor sounds, singing, and a wander routine with numerous stored phrases and responses), 24K expandable RAM, 360-degree sonar and light scanner, temperature and sound sensors, electronic voice synthesizer, direct text-to-speech conversion (type “say” on the remote keyboard, type the word/s to be spoken, press return and HERO 2K will speak the typed phrase).
The arm is a mechanical manipulator that the HERO 2000 can use to move objects: arm payload 1 lb. It has 5 axis of motion: elbow, shoulder, wrist pivot, wrist rotate, and gripper. The gripper has a patented “sense-of-touch” system that adjusts gripping force (3.75 lbs) and senses object size. The arm motor controller circuit board, which is housed in the swing-out card cage on the robot, contains a 5-channel servo-controller that controls the 5 arm motors.
Here are some of the accessories that were available when this robot was first introduced: