The ‘smart’ robot that kills viruses
Scientists at Izmir University of Economics (IUE) developed a special sterilization robot that minimizes the risk of virus transmission in closed spaces. The robot, developed by Asst. Prof. Dr. Pınar Oğuz Ekim from Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering and her 3 students, cleans the air in an area of 5 thousand 700 square meters in 90 minutes. The robot, produced as a result of a year of work, operates with cold fogging method. Stating that they developed the robot using domestic and national products, and that the software belongs to them, Asst. Prof. Dr. Ekim said, “We can observe and direct the robot as we want. Our easily produced and moved robot is also suitable for fast production.”
Asst. Prof. Dr. Pınar Oğuz Ekim, Faculty Member at IUE Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering, met her students Bekir Bostancı, Mehmet Emre Söyünmez and Sercan Çağdaş Tekkök 3 years ago. Asst. Prof. Dr. Ekim and her students, first worked on an autonomous device that can map and position indoors with the support of TUBITAK and successfully completed it.
200 THOUSAND TL SUPPORT BY TUBITAK
Deciding to further develop this partnership, the team applied to the TUBITAK 1512 Program and received 200 thousand lira of entrepreneurship support and established a company called Advoard. The IUE team decided to develop a special sterilization robot following the first Covid-19 case seen in March 2020 in Turkey. While 3 students continued their master's degree at IUE after their graduation, they continued to work with Asst. Prof. Dr. Ekim. Asst. Prof. Dr. Ekim and her students succeeded in developing the robot they aimed after a year of hard work.
EASILY SPOTTED THANKS TO ITS LIGHTS
Giving information about the project, Asst. Prof. Dr. Pınar Oğuz Ekim said, “When we succeeded in the project we did with my students on the autonomous device before, we wanted to develop a sterilization robot thinking that it will be needed in the coronavirus period. We worked very hard, especially in the software part, to develop a robot that is environmentally sensitive, stops suddenly when something comes across, and can move itself. However, we reached our goal in the end. It leaves 1 liter of liquid containing hydrogen peroxide for every 400 square meters. The robot is approximately 45 kilos with its batteries and liquid tank. According to analysis we conducted, it cleans 5,700 square meters within 90 minutes. It can be used easily in large areas such as shopping malls or factories. The robot is easy to spot as there is light in the front and behind it.”
WE WERE ENCOURAGED FOR NEW PROJECTS
Stating that they have gained great experience in the robotic design process and are encouraged for new projects, IUE students Bekir Bostancı, Mehmet Emre Söyünmez, and Sercan Çağdaş Tekkök said, “It is very valuable for us to complete such a remarkable project by taking advantage of the opportunities provided by our university with our professor. The project process, which started at the university level, carried us to an important point before we even completed our master's degree. Our aim is to develop needed projects that have not been done before and thus contribute to science and human life. When we started university, we couldn't imagine that we could get this far in a short time. But we did it. We will continue this development with new projects.”