Thursday 22 October 2020

New UVC disinfection robot to help in fight against Covid

DUBAI, September 12, 2020

BlueBotics, a leading provider of autonomous navigation and mobile robotics services based in Switzerland, has joined hands with Slovenian industrial group Engmotion to develop a new mini UVC robot that can scale up the fight against viruses.
Based on proven mobile robot and UVC lamp technologies, the mini UVC can be used alone or in a connected fleet to autonomously disinfect hospitals and other public buildings such as airports, hotels, and commercial/industrial sites. 
The robot combines the reliability and fleet management capabilities of BlueBotics’ mobile robot and navigation technologies with Engmotion’s powerful Steril-One UVC disinfection lamp. It is a robust, industry-proven solution that disinfects as programmed every time.
"As Covid-19 forces facility managers to improve the depth and frequency of their cleaning operations at a time when fewer staff may be available, this robot provides a new and efficient way to achieve these goals," remarked Dr Nicola Tomatis, the CEO of BlueBotics.
"Using our industry-proven ANTsoftware it is simple to generate a map, set disinfection points and your autonomous robot will do the rest. The robot easily and efficiently disinfects any type of indoor public space, from hotel rooms to hospitals, airports and more," he stated.
With businesses around the world taking tentative steps towards reopening, attention has turned to how public facilities such as hospitals, airports and hotels can ensure they remain safe for visitors. 
The public are increasingly seeking reassurances of venue safety before visiting or passing through, and at the core of organizations’ responses is enhanced disinfecting policies and practices, remarked Dr Tomatis.
With the pressure that the Covid-19 pandemic has put on hospitals and nursing homes, there is an increased focus on ensuring they are a safe location for patients, medical staff and also visitors. 
BlueBotics, working in combination with Engmotion, developed the mini UVC robot to enable operations teams to disinfect sites safely and autonomously. 
In a study last year published in the American Journal of Infection Control, examined the effects of an ultraviolet (UV) light technology designed to defeat superbugs in hospitals and found that it eliminated almost 98 per cent of pathogens. 
These infections cost billions of dollars, and some estimates state that they cause almost 100,000 deaths each year in the US alone.
"When it comes to disinfection technology, UVC light is proven to destroy up to 99% of viruses on surfaces, including the SARS family of viruses, and vegetative bacteria,” remarked Enrico Merlani, the CEO of Engmotion. 
"However, static lamps require trained staff to place and move them. An autonomous mobile robot that can move and position itself at every required location really is the optimal solution," stated Merlani. 
"The robot allows facility managers to do more with less, systematically disinfecting more areas, more deeply and more often using either one or several connected robots, and all without the need for additional human resources," he added.
It features safety laser scanners at the front and rear of the robot, which allows it to detect obstacles and people when in transit, and a high-sensitivity movement sensor on top, which automatically shuts down UVC operations if a human is detected.
"If an operator needs to disinfect an area more quickly, disinfect a larger site, or clean multiple areas at the same time, the robot’s ANT server software makes it easy to create a full fleet of connected mini UVC robots," explained Dr Tomatis. 
"Other ANT driven vehicles can also be included in the fleet, such as Cleanfix’s floor cleaning robots or other logistics vehicles. Additionally, ANT server’s built-in simulator allows an operator to verify a project before activation," he noted.
Deployed thousands of times in the field, BlueBotics’ ANT technology and Engmotion’s Steril-One UVC disinfection lamp ensure the system disinfects exactly as planned, time and time again, he added. 
The BlueBotics mini UVC was recently deployed at an international airport in Italy as part of a pilot project carried out by Software Design (A SITA Company). 
"In this Covid-19 era, airport operators need to keep their sites cleaner, with more disinfection cycles every day," explained Marco Pici, the head of Business Development & Business Transformation at Software Design. 
“The BlueBotics mini UVC can be a great help. It can be used to run more cycles with the same resources, helping sites to do more with less. With the ANT server an operator can easily manage and operate a number of different robot types, like our reception robot, and use these as they see fit, or even have them triggered by the airport’s operation system,” he added.-TradeArabia News Service 


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