A mechanical engineer at the University of Virginia has built a semi-autonomous robot to help combat the coronavirus. According to a release, studies have found that the Covid-19 virus can be destroyed by ultraviolet light and head while on surfaces, including countertops, chairs, walls, and floors.
Last year, mechanical and aerospace engineering professor Tomonair Furukawa designed a roving robot that can move about hazardous areas. He recently realized that adding UV and heat lamps to it could change it into a decontamination device.
The robot has multiple UV lights and heat lamps on it to sweep walls and vertical surfaces, the floor,
The robots can also work in environments that would be dangerous to humans, such as temperature extremes, lack of clean air, or the presence of pathogens or poisons. It will be the first robot we know of that can “spot” decontamination of various surfaces, both vertical and horizontal, as well as in hidden areas.
The robot also has a depth-of-field camera and computer software to build a 3D map of a space, to make sure no accessible areas are untouched by treatment. It can work by itself while being watched by an operator at a control board and video monitoring system in another room or location.
Source: CBS 19