Aspiring Japanese dentists can now look forward to honing their skills with a robotic simulator, where mistakes won't have serious consequences.
Developers at Showa University and robot maker Tmsuk say Hanako Showa, designed to look just like a 5-foot-tall Japanese woman, is the first of her kind in the world.
Offering realistic treatment scenarios, she can open and close her mouth, turn her head, and say "Ouch! It hurts!" She can also interact verbally with students, answering questions like, "Are you OK?"
The developers plan to commercialize Hanako for sales to university dentistry schools. Graduates who get the chance to work with Hanako will at least have some experience with a patient who doesn't dread appointments.
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