Robots to keep Dubai Metro stations looking clean

The RTA said the robot cleaner requires minimum human intervention.

Robots to keep Dubai Metro stations looking clean
Robots to keep Dubai Metro stations looking clean

Robots will soon help keep the floors at Metro stations look fresh and clean.

A four-foot, 375-kg, yellow scrubber-dryer, which is fully automated and environment-friendly, was unveiled by Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) at the Gitex Technology Week on Sunday.

Mohammed Hassan Al Ameeri, RTA’s director at the rail maintenance department, told Khaleej Times that a robot cleaner would be deployed at various stations for testing early next year.

“Our Metro stations come in various sizes and we need to scan the areas first and calibrate a pre-programme route before we can deploy the robot cleaners,” Al Ameeri said.

The robot cleaner is an autonomous scrubber-dryer distributed by the US-based company Diversey. It has intelligent programming working on “self-drive” mode, which means it does its cleaning job without human intervention.

According to the manufacturer manual, it has spinning brushes to reach tight corners that can be used for mopping, sterilisation and vacuuming.

The RTA said the robot cleaner requires minimum human intervention. It only needs to be filled with water and cleaning substances and switched on for a pre-programmed operation.

It is environment-friendly and will reduce water usage through the built-in water purification system. According to Diversey, it can reduce water consumption by up to 76 per cent and the onboard chemical dosing system can save on cleaning solutions by up to 70 per cent.

The robot cleaner is also fast and efficient. Working at an optimal speed of 2km per hour, it can clean without breaks and can be immediately deployed without human supervision.

Moreover, it is safe to use. With less human interaction necessary, work-related injuries will also be reduced.

It has 21 sonars to ‘see’ environment and one 2D Lidar (light detecting and ranging) that works in tandem with the sonar; eight optical sensors; and a touchscreen where different modes of operation can be set, including L-shaped movement, T-section, and cross-section.

No special training is required to operate the robot cleaner as it has an icon-based touchscreen that guides any user through all the functions, regardless of language or skill level.

Get to know the new metro cleaner

>Run time up to 4 hours, covering up to 1,260sqm of floor area at speed of 1.8km/h

>Size: 53inches long; 35inches wide; 50inches tall

>Weight: 376kg (including battery)

>Tank capacity:

-Fresh water-90 liters

-Waste water- 90 litres

By Angel Tesorero