By: Samayeeta Maitra
The dreaded coronavirus has shocked the world. It has been a really stressful time for everyone. People are unsure about how to cope with the sense of abandonment, bereavement, and loneliness. There will be changes we need to make as we recover from the current crisis and all of these changes will have a real impact on the way the world operates in the future. During these tough times, a hands-free and touch-free interface has become the need of the hour. Performing tasks without direct human to human contact is difficult and this is exactly where the robotics and AI industry have the potential to offer us real value; the ability to perform tasks without putting our own lives at risk. From the very first outbreak of coronavirus in China, various health organizations immediately turned their focus to robots to help us cope with the situation. From interacting with symptomatic patients to taking their temperatures, robotic technology has helped reduce the spread of this virus. Chinese hospitals started using smart delivery robots for delivering cooked food, medication, and PPE kits to the patients. The other major role of robots included cleaning and disinfecting public areas. UVD Robots with their inbuilt autonomous technology and ultraviolet light are the world’s best disinfection solution and have been proven to eliminate pathogens like coronavirus and bacteria within 10-15 minutes. Robots also help in surveillance and monitoring areas to make sure that people maintain social distancing and abide by the guidelines. Robots can connect patients with their family members via a ten-inch screen with the help of their inbuilt 3D data and HD camera. Having more than 60 sensors, these humanoid robots use LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) and SLAM technologies to detect objects in their path to avoid conclusion and they use open API (Application Programming Interface) to allow further customization. Robots have been used for helping treat people with dementia and autism. Moreover, they have helped provide companionship for people who feel alone during this pandemic with innovations, like KeepOn and Flobi. That being said, all of this is indeed an achievement for robotics technology. As artificial intelligence and computer science advances faster, and as new opportunities are introduced in machine learning, a world of possibility exists for robots to become even more advanced than today in society.