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2020.04.02 09:52

Lithuanian firm develops robot to fight Covid-19

Simonas Bendžius, Sigita Vegytė, LRT RADIJAS, LRT.lt2020.04.02 09:52

A Lithuanian company is developing a disinfectant-spraying robot that could help limit the spread of Covid-19. The prototype is to be tested in a Hong Kong hospital this week.

Rubedo Sistemos, a Kaunas-based robotics firm, says the robot does not yet have a name and the prototype's appearance is not quite market-ready. It so far looks like “a box on wheels,” says the firm's business development manager Paulius Rakauskas.

“It's a mobile platform with wheels. Mounted on the platform is a box with a disinfection device and containers for the disinfecting liquid,” Rakauskas describes the product.

In the time of the coronavirus, the Lithuanian invention can help disinfect crucial spaces – like hospitals or train stations – without exposing people to infections.

“A person who disinfects a room can get infected with viruses or bacteria. We wanted to avoid that,” Rakauskas says. “At the same time, it will free up people, especially in hospitals where resources are scarce as it is.”

The robot uses special ionised hydrogen peroxide gas to kill germs. “It can eliminate 99.99 percent of various viruses, bacteria and fungi,” according to Rakauskas. “This kind of disinfection is usually used in labs to completely sterilise the room.”

The robot is operated remotely, with a computer or a phone, and can direct the disinfectant at spots where it is most needed.

The disinfection device itself is produced by an American company and is extremely efficient. “It was developed in the US, in cooperation with the military industry which needed it to counteract biological weapons,” Rakauskas says.

Rubedo Sistemos expects to finish installation works over the coming months.