Mitsubishi robot solves Rubik’s Cube in 0.305 seconds

A Mitsubishi Electric robot has set a new world record for solving a Rubik’s Cube in literally the blink of an eye.

Called TOKUI Fast Accurate Synchronized Motion Testing Robot, or TOKUFASTbot, it is now the fastest robot in the world to solve the famous puzzle.

According to Guinness World Records, which confirmed the achievement, it knocked 0.07 seconds off the previous record of 0.38 seconds.

TOKUFASTbot was about 10 times faster than the fastest human to accomplish the same feat. American-Korean Max Park managed to solve the Rubik's Cube in 3.13 seconds last year in California.

The robot’s time of 0.305 seconds is about as much as it takes for human eyes to blink. Rubik Cube’s own construction could be the only limit for an even faster time – it struggled to keep up with the speed of the robot.

The first official attempt at achieving the record failed after the puzzle jammed up, but the robot was able to clock in a time on a second try.

“Shaving off time as much as possible was difficult, but it was fun at the same time. I never had issues with motivation through the project,” Mitsubishi engineer Tokui, who led the record attempt, told Guinness World Records.

According to Mitsubishi, the robot could rotate the cube 90 degrees in just 0.009 seconds thanks to its in-built “compact, high-power, signal-responsive servomotors.” An AI algorithm allowed it to recognize colors.

Mitsubishi sought to set the world record “to demonstrate our technical capabilities in achieving high-speed, high-precision windings,” said Yuji Yoshimura, a senior manager at Mitsubishi Electric.

These are “key to increasing the productivity and efficiency of motors used in many of our products,” Yoshimura said.

The record also demonstrates the rapid speed advancement made in recent years in robotics. In 2009, the world record for the fastest robot to solve a Rubik’s Cube stood at one minute and four seconds. The one-second barrier was broken in 2016.

The Rubik’s Cube was designed by Hungarian inventor Ernő Rubik in 1974. Since then, half a billion copies of the cube have been sold globally, making it one of the world’s best-selling toys.