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IFR Press Room

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Press Releases

Robots help to fight coronavirus worldwide

IFR´s Innovation Award winner from Denmark helps to fight pandemic

Mar 31, 2020 Frankfurt Robots play an important role in fighting the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 around the globe. Disinfection robot UVD for example has been in high demand since the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic. Chinese hospitals have ordered more than 2,000 UVD robots by Danish manufacturer Blue Ocean Robotics. They started to destroy viruses in Wuhan, where the global pandemic began.

The units operate in more than 40 countries – in Asia, Europe and the United States. UVD uses ultraviolet light (UV-C) to kill harmful microorganisms. The robot is the current holder of the IERA innovation award by IEEE and the International Federation of Robotics (IFR).

“We are now helping solve one of the biggest problems of our time, preventing the spread of viruses and bacteria with a robot that saves lives,” says Claus Risager, CEO of Blue Ocean Robotics. “The immediate demand has increased a lot with the outbreak of COVID-19. Existing customers buy many more units than before, and many new customers are ordering the UVD robots to fight coronavirus and other harmful microorganisms.” This is an ongoing success story for the IERA award winning robot. Blue Ocean Robotics has seen a growth in sales of more than 400 percent annually over the last two years.

Robot moves autonomously

The Danish robot moves autonomously around patient rooms and operating theatres - covering all critical surfaces with the right amount of UV-C light in order to kill specific viruses and bacteria. The more light the robot exposes to a surface, the more harmful microorganisms are destroyed. In a typical patient room, 99.99 % of all viruses and bacteria are killed within 10 minutes.

Robot helps at airports, schools or office spaces

“UVD is a supplementary device which assists the cleaning staff,” said Claus Risager. For safety reasons, it works on its own and automatically disengages the UV-C light if someone enters the room. The collaborative robot can be used in various enclosed spaces – not only in hospitals. The technology also works in environments such as office spaces, shopping malls, schools, airports and production facilities.

“UVD Robot” by Blue Ocean Robotics drives autonomously and eliminates bacteria and other harmful microorganisms in hospitals © Blue Ocean Robotics
“UVD Robot” by Blue Ocean Robotics drives autonomously and eliminates bacteria and other harmful microorganisms in hospitals © Blue Ocean Robotics

“Robots have a great potential of supporting us in the current severe corona pandemic,” said Dr Susanne Bieller, General Secretary of the International Federation of Robotics.

“They can support us in healthcare environments, but also in the development, testing and production of medicine, vaccines and other medical devices and auxiliaries. Disinfection tasks performed e.g. by UVD units or safe distribution of hospital material in quarantine zones - without personal contact - provided e.g. by Photoneo´s mobile robot Phollower, are just two of many examples.”

Phollower 100 mobile platform © Photoneo
Phollower 100 mobile platform © Photoneo

By now, medical robots represent a well-established service robot market with a considerable growth potential. Sales of medical robots increased by 50% to 5,100 units in 2018. This is according to the statistics published in World Robotics by IFR.

Press contact

econNEWSnetwork
Carsten Heer
Tel. +49 (0) 40 822 44 284
Email: [email protected]

Videos

Watch UVD at work: https://vimeo.com/291756170

Watch Phollower at work: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HIckNx_Otq0&feature=youtu.be

Phollower (developed under the working title Pathfinder ) is a new-generation autonomous mobile robot for an ultra-modern material transport and handling in warehouses, hospitals, hotels and factories. It helps the staff in hospitals and other health care centers with distribution of medicines, laundry and other material to respective workplaces. It saves a lot of time and energy, and no adjustments of premises are needed to allow the robot to move in a given space, including via elevators, without any difficulties. Carrying (max 100 kg/ 220.5 lbs) and pulling (max 350 kg/ 771.62 lbs).

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Press Photos

Wire Cutting

© FANUC

A FANUC Robot LR Mate 200iD is loading a WireCut EDM machine

Collaborative Robot

© ABB

YUMI is ABB's collaborative robot on the market

Electronics industry

© ABB

Robots at assembly line in the electronics industry

Automotive welding

© ABB

Robots welding car chassis in the automotive industry

Automotive welding

© ABB

Robots welding parts in the automotive industry

UR5 - A highly flexible robot arm

© Universal Robots

Trelleborg uses UR5 robots (payload 5kg) to carry out machine tending mainly on CNC machines

UR3 - ultra-flexible table-top robot

© Universal Robots

MARKA uses UR3 robots (payload 3kg) to screw drive the caps on its own-brand consumer goods. Accuracy and reliability were the crucial factors for the investment.

Cheese Handling

© Staubli

Cutting and Handling of Cheese

Automotive

© Staubli

Automotives - Automation

Programming

© YASKAWA

Using the teach pendant for programming, or touch up of previously made offline programs.

Printing

© CoolGraphics/Yaskawa

MOTOMAN dual arm robot in a co‐worker robot cell. The robot separates, airs and moves stacks of printed paper sheets after the printing process.

Labrobot

© YASKAWA

The MOTOMAN dual arm robot in a biomedical cell where it performs all the necessary tasks in a laboratory environment.

Cleanfix

© BlueBotics 2017

Cleanfix - RA 660 - ANT driven cleaning a floor

ANT driven AGV

© BlueBotics 2017

AGV Scandinavia - ANT driven forklift

Press Contact IFR

Carsten Heer

IFR Press Inquiries


Phone: +49 40-822 44 284
E-Mail: press(at)ifr.org

Dr. Susanne Bieller

IFR General Secretary

Lyoner Str. 18
DE-60528 Frankfurt am Main
Phone: +49 69-6603-1502
E-Mail: secretariat(at)ifr.org