Published: 29th April 2020
This robot designed by UPES students' may soon replace humans in COVID wards
The robot distributes food and medicines to patients, sprays disinfectant and dispenses sanitiser
At a time when social and physical distancing have to be religiously practiced to stall the virus and beat the pandemic, one may have to think of ways to reduce human interaction. The country watched in awe when Jaipur's SMS hospital employed a robot to serve the patients at the isolated wards with COVID-19 patients.
Now, two students from the University of Petroleum and Energy Studies, Dehradun have come up with a similar robot that can deliver food, masks and medicines to the patients in the isolation ward, spray disinfectant in the hospital and premises and dispense sanitiser. The students Mayank Barsainya and Kshitij Garg have made the robot on a budget of just Rs 15,000.
The design was already in place. "We already had the prototype of the robot ready. It was initially meant for use in agriculture. However, when the pandemic spread and we got to see how this has become a serious issue altogether, we thought we must improvise this to do our bit to fight against COVID," says Kshitij.
Explaining what inspired the duo to develop the robot, Mayank says, "The governments were asking us to maintain social distancing. However, the people who sanitise the isolation wards and deliver food, medicine and safety equipment to the infected are also humans. So, we wanted to think of a suitable alternative."
Also, did we mention that anyone can remotely operate the robot? "The person who controls doesn't necessarily have to be in its vicinity. They can control it using a smartphone sitting on any corner in the world," says Kshitij.
The students are now in talks with the Jabalpur District Collector to demonstrate its working in the district. They also say that they are planning to file for a patent for the robot, which was already used to spray disinfectant on the students' locality.