Robotnik and the Spanish technologies in the fight against COVID-19

‘El Mundo’ newspaper has just published an article about the different technologies developed by Spanish companies in the fight against COVID-19. Among them are Robotnik's mobile robots that, among other things, help to maintain the much-needed safety distance between healthcare personnel and patients themselves. These are collaborative mobile robots that transport food or medicines or have implemented modules to telemedicine or disinfection. The possibilities are vast.

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robots in healthcare industry

The importance of collaborative robotics in the fight against COVID-19

Robotics has emerged as one of the technologies that is most contributing to the fight against COVID-19, providing numerous solutions to the needs that the pandemic has raised. In this way, also, it has contributed to revitalizing the economy, which has been severely reduced by the health situation we are experiencing worldwide. In fact, it has brought to light the importance of robotics and the prominent role they play at the moment, as it is already happening in the current industry 4.0 and other technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, blockchain or cybersecurity, among others. There are numerous applications in which collaborative robotics is already present, something that had to be reflected in these times of crisis.

Why is robotics key right now?

In the fight against the virus, one of the measures that has been shown to work to prevent contagion is to maintain a safe distance between people. And here collaborative robotics has a lot to say.

Specifically, mobile robots working in hospital can perform autonomous tasks such as:

  • Transportation of food.
  • Transportation  of medicine
  • Transportation of  laundry supplies.
  • Disinfection tasks.
  • Telemedicine.

In this way, the physical relationship between health personnel as well as patients and staff in general who transit through the hospital is avoided. All these tasks are the usual ones when we talk about collaborative mobile robotics (this last concept, collaborative means that robots, thanks to the integrated sensorization, can work safely in environments with humans).

Already in 2008, Robotnik noticed the importance of robotics and launched its AGVS robots in several hospitals, which were used precisely to autonomously transport different goods through the hospital. This made it possible to automate a repetitive and tedious activity while preventing it from being carried out by a person, who could dedicate his time to carrying out tasks of greater added value.

Current projects from Robotnik

The same idea of ​​maintaining the safety distance between people is at the base of the RADERPAC project (Rapid Deployment Robot for Pandemic Crises) that Robotnik is currently developing and is funded by the Generalitat Valenciana (Spain). In consists of the development of a modular robot designed to work in hospitals allowing the assembly of a module for disinfection and fumigation (something fundamental in the fight against COVID-19). This same mobile robot will serve as the basis for other health purposes such as telemedicine, telepresence or the transport of loads previously mentioned.

Robotnik has extensive experience in the development and supply of this type of robot, the use of which goes beyond the healthcare environment, also being used in areas of nuclear, radiological, chemical, and biological contamination. This technology can be applied almost immediately for many applications, using robots as the first separation barrier against the virus and thus helping to protect the workforce and the patients themselves, which showcases the importance of robotics in this sector.

Other projects Robotnik is currently working on is ENDORSE, which is part of the H2020 program of the European Union. This R&D project is based on developing logistics and diagnosis applications for hospitals. In it, different developments will be carried out in order to automate various tasks within a hospital, from the distribution of medicines and materials to the monitoring of the health status of patients. All of them aimed at reducing contact between people.

There are many applications that are being carried out and that highlight the importance of robotics at the present time. To those already mentioned, the following can be added:

  • Collaborative robotic arms (cobots) as a working tool for physical therapists. These would serve to interact with the patient without having to physically touch him.
  • Robots for the automatic performance of COVID-19 tests.
  • Robots for processing these tests quickly and efficiently. Something that, for example, the Flemish Institute of Biotechnology (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) is working on.
  • Robots to manufacture masks. In Spain, thanks to the help from some large companies, it has been possible to increase the number of masks that healthcare personnel especially needed.
  • Telepresence robots. Based on our Summit-XL Steel, we found a robot that uses the latest advances in artificial intelligence, digital signage, and video analysis and that performs tasks such as analysing the number of visitors, age, and gender of them.

 

In the field of telepresence there are striking proposals that highlight, once again, the importance of robotics. This is the case of quadruped robots that, in principle, were designed for rescue and transport tasks and have ended up serving as a medical tool to check the condition of patients without the need for a physical presence by the doctor, only using the tablet that incorporates the robot.

This same robot has been used in Singapore to, using loudspeakers, send messages to the population reminding them of the importance of staying at least 2 meters away.

The pandemic that we are currently experiencing and that affects everyone, has forced to redouble efforts in all areas. Robotics could not be left out of it. On May 4, the European Commission launched the Coronavirus Global Response initiative and mobilized a total of € 1.4 billion to fight the virus. On May 20, it mobilized another 122 million euros to support a series of R&D actions to combat COVID-19. This framework of actions highlights the importance of robotics, which will continue in force once we move forward and place ourselves in the future that COVID-19 leaves us.

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Collaborative robotics solutions to combat the health crisis of COVID-19

The current health crisis has led to the introduction of different prevention measures, among which is establishing the safety distance between people. This is the context of the article published by El Mercantil, which shows how robotics will have an even more important role after COVID-19. In addition to helping industrial processes, collaborative mobile robotics can perform specific tasks in the logistics or health field that will facilitate this social distancing. This is the case of robots that transport materials in health centres, for example, being an intermediation tool among health personnel.

If you want to know more, we leave the article here.


Robotnik puts its technology at the service of the COVID-19 health crisis

In the current world crisis caused by COVID-19, and foreseeably in other future ones with similar characteristics that we are facing, health and non-health personnel are exposed to direct contact with infected patients. The COVID-19 virus has an infection capacity more than 3 times greater than the 1918 Spanish flu. Despite security measures, only in Spain more than 13% of health personnel have been infected in this first wave of the pandemic.

In this context, the use of robotic systems reduces the contact of these personnel with patients or, also, non-health personnel, keeping them away from risk areas to carry out their services. Robots can help automate many of the tasks that are performed on a daily basis in a hospital: cleaning, disinfection, communication with the patient, transport of food, transport of patients, telemedicine (temperature measurements, blood pressure, oximetry, etc. ...) as well as many others, which significantly reduces the risk of all personnel.

Robotnik has extensive experience in the development and supply of logistics robots, as well as modular robots with the ability to mount different "loads" or modules that can be used in environments with nuclear, radiological, chemical and biological contamination. This technology can be applied almost immediately for many of the applications already specified, using robots as the first separation barrier against viruses and thus helping to protect workforce.

In the specific case of the telemedicine module, Robotnik is participating in the European project ENDORSE. This project aims to validate the integration of an electronic diagnostic module (equipped with non-invasive sensors) in a mobile robot base from Robotnik, so that it can serve as a direct interface to obtain the patient's status remotely.

The fight against COVID-19 is a global fight and helping to combat this pandemic must be a joint commitment of all the social agents, who have to make their contribution in the different areas to the best of their ability.


Robotnik and Itera collaborate in the development of the "Symphony"

Research and development of intelligent technology management system with multifunctional capabilities for operational improvement in the industry project. Supported by the Valencian Agency of Innovation, the objective of this project is the development of the technologies necessary to have robots and mobile manipulators easy to integrate and use. These technologies include advanced robot and operator location systems, cloud fleet management and planning systems, new quality control systems and parameter calibration. This project has been supported by the AVI (Valencian Agency of Innovation) and has the collaboration of the technological institutes Ai2 (Industrial Automation and Computing) and ITI (Technological Institute of Informatics).

 


Robotnik exhibits its robots for industry 4.0 in the UCLM event

Robotnik has just participated in the conference about collaborative robotics and industry 4.0 organized by the University of Castilla-La Mancha (UCLM). In it, Robotnik contributed with its experience in collaborative robotics, showing real cases for the industry. The conference held by María Benítez, Marketing Director of Robotnik, helped to present the advantages of collaborative mobile robotics: flexibility in implementation, controlled costs and the possibility of working safely in work environments where there are people.

Several media have attended the event. Among them, the Tribuna de Ciudad Real, which has published the article "The paper of collaborative robotics in the industry", which highlights the optimization of production processes, the lower cost and the highest quality and competitiveness that collaborative robotics brings.

Furthermore, Lanza Diario de La Mancha highlights in its report "The human and robot plants are already part of the present" what is a reality: the implementation of collaborative robots in industries, of different sizes, to carry out mechanical work and repetitive.

Below are the information issued and published:


Have you ever wondered what’s the best robotics company specializing in ROS?

If so, The Robot Report gives you the answer, or at least it brings you closer to it, in his article Top 10 ROS-based robotics companies in 2019, which introduces the 10 robotics companies that are right now considered international benchmarks in the sector. And, as it couldn’t be otherwise, Robotnik is on that list.

The Robot Report has developed its winning list following a series of own criteria among which are the following : you can buy the robot directly to manufacturers without going through intermediaries, the robot runs on ROS from minute one and the moment you acquire it you can program it at low level layering. The Robot Report concludes that Robotnik belongs to the top 10 ROS companies, because it meets all the above criteria and has become a collaborative world leader in mobile robotics.

Robotnik bet ROS dates back to the origins of software programming itself. Our R & D products meet the objectives of any developer : open source, customization options, modularity and ad hoc designs. This extends to all products of a large portfolio of both robots and mobile manipulators. In Robotnik not put limit to R & D and so we are in love with ROS.

The ROS philosophy led to Robotnik to create an online shop: ROS Components, which offers you the opportunity to purchase the components with support for ROS in the simplest way. While we contribute to the growth of the robotics community, providing some of the benefits of our online e-commerce to the Open Source Robotics Foundation (OSRF), the nonprofit organization responsible for the development of new versions and maintenance of the necessary infrastructure for servers, among other things.

At ROS Components you can find : from lasers to robotic hands and grippers, and also force sensors, robotic arms as well as mobile platforms and mobile manipulators. All of it supported by ROS, the reference software in robotics nowadays.


The new RB-VULCANO in HispaRob

This month's Hisparob newsletter includes, within its ‘Our partners’ section, the new range of robots that Robotnik has just launched: the RB-VULCANO series. This new product line is focused on the industrial market thanks to its most outstanding characteristics: its great load capacity, its autonomy and its great versatility to incorporate different tools depending on the tasks to be performed.

The new RB-VULCANO is designed, manufactured and marketed by Robotnik. This is the result of Robotnik´s experience for more than 17 years in the Mobile Robotics Sector.

A new line of products that expands and complements the product portfolio of the company by incorporating three new robots. They are characterized by their large load capacity, their autonomy, their industrial approach and their versatility to incorporate various tools based on their use.

  • The mobile platform RB-VULCANO BASE stands out for its high load capacity: 1.750 kg and an autonomy of up to 10 hours. Both features are extremely useful for industrial environments, especially for logistics applications.
  • Besides that, the robot RB-VULCANO consists of the mobile platform RB-Vulcano Base, lift column and a UR5 arm (payload of 5 kg) or arm UR10 (payload 10 kg). By default, it has integrated collaborative gripper 40 CO-ACT (Schunk) but this can be replaced by any other type of tool (as a screwdriver, for example).
  • Finally, the mobile platform RB-VULCANO PRO stands out for its ability to integrate various components for performing numerous tasks in industrial, agricultural and logistics environments. Among these components are tools, structures, supports, robotic arms, forklifts, roller-conveyors, tanks and air/hydraulic units, among others.

Currently, RB-VULCANO is already operating in different real industrial environments, from the agriculture sector to aircraft manufacturing, through logistics centers. RB-VULCANO is capable of carrying out any activity that is repetitive, heavy or dangerous, optimizing production within any company. Among the competitive advantages of these new robots and mobile manipulators is their flexibility. That is, they are modular and versatile units, which can incorporate different sensors, tools and components. In addition, these are collaborative robotic platforms, that is, they can safely work with people in different work environments.

Robotnik is a partner of the Spanish Robotics Technology Platform, HispaRob, a forum that welcomes different agents involved in the development, promotion and integration of robotic technologies in all areas of our society.

You can download the HispaRob newsletter here.

 


The ‘National Robotics Conference’ is back

The next edition of the ‘National Robotics Conference’, organized by the Spanish Automation Committee (CEA), will take place in Alicante on June 13 and 14 continuing the editions previously held in Valladolid in 2018 and in Valencia in 2017.

Robotnik, as in previous years, will attend to publicize our vision of how collaborative mobile robots contribute to the improvement of production processes. It will be in the presentation of our colleague Néstor Bolinches ‘Collaborative Mobile Robotics: from R&D to Industry 4.0’ that will take place next Thursday, June 13 from 19:15 to 20:15 in the EPS I building of the Higher Polytechnic School of the University from Alicante, on the San Vicente del Raspeig Campus.

More information

 


Article in Robohub about the AIDE project

Robohub notes to the results of the project AIDE, which develops an automated wheelchair with an exoskeleton robotic arm for use in the home. The idea is that the next-generation of wheelchairs could incorporate brain-controlled robotic arms and rentable add-on motors in order to help people with disabilities more easily carry out daily tasks or get around a city. The automated wheelchair uses artificial intelligence to extract relevant information from the user, such as their behaviour, intentions and emotional state, and also analyses its environmental surroundings.

Read the full article here .