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Robots join Kerala’s battle against coronavirus


The robots could be programmed to analyse people’s body temperatures, said their makers.
The robots could be programmed to analyse people’s body temperatures, said their makers.

THE South Indian state of Kerala’s moves to contain the cornonavirus outbreak have caught wide attention with two robots joining the ‘battle’.

Parliamentarian Shahsi Tharoor was among the first to tweet about the new recruits.

The interactive robots developed by Asimov Robotics, a startup, have been deployed at the Integrated Startup Complex in Kochi, where they offer hand sanitisers, face masks, and awareness videos and briefs to visitors.

They are even “programmed to regularly wipe the handlebars of the entrance door with a sanitiser”, said their makers.

The robots could soon be programmed to analyse people’s body temperatures and advise those with high temperatures to consult the health department, said Asimov Robotics CEO Jayakrishnan T.

“Once we equip the robots with thermal sensors, it will only take a week to reprogram the robots for the task,” he added.

The company said such robots, with additional features such as mobile phone sanitising, could be assembled in a couple of days if it gets “support from the authorities”.

Reports said the robots could be used at airports and railway stations.

Notably, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had urged researchers, innovators and tech-lovers to rise to the occasion and ideate for a better planet.