Robot residency: Researchers study new generation of care bots

The Care-o-Bot in action Credit: ITV News Anglia

The question of how you care for an ageing population has been wrestled with for years.

It's become a hot topic for robotics researchers too.

Japan has been at the vanguard of this movement - with long running trials of robots caring for the elderly.

Paro is a therapeutic robotic seal. It has been used to treat elderly patients with dementia for more than 15 years. Its sensors allow it to react to touch, light, and sound.

One of the major centres for this area of research is the University of Hertfordshire.

The university has just upgraded it's 'Robot House' in Hatfield, to become home to a group of next generation robots which will be used for research by academics from across the world.

Researchers from the University will explore how people interact with the machines. It'll also study the way other technologies can improve quality of life for older people.

WATCH: a report on the care robot programme by ITV News Anglia's Claire McGlasson

The upgrade comes as Cranfield University launched a new survey looking at our attitudes to robots in the home.

READ: Would you let a robot look after your child?

The eight new resident robots are all designed to provide people with different areas of support, from fetching objects to reminding peole to eat and drink.

RELATED NEWS: Chloe Keedy looks at how robotics research is helping people with disabilities.

An athlete competes at the Cybathlon Credit: ITV News Anglia