For the first time in Bangladesh, students of Computer Science & Engineering (CSE) Department of Military Institute of Science and Technology (MIST) have developed a semi-autonomous UVC disinfection robot named “UVC-PURGE” in an effort to fight against the current COVID-19 Pandemic. Team “UVC-PURGE” has snatched the championship in Application criteria of Medical Robotics Challenge for Contagious Disease 2020 organized by the UK Robotics & Automation Society (RAS) Network. Being initially selected among entries from thousands of universities and industries, Team “UVC-PURGE” submitted their promo video and documentation for the Final Round of the competition on December 2020.06 awards were promised to be given in Application, Design and Innovation criteria. Among all the finalists this young team from MIST raised the Flag of Bangladesh at the Highest Level being the Champion in Application Criteria. An award ceremony will be held online on Thursday 4th February 2021, 17:00 - 18:00 GMT where all the members of UVC-PURGE team will be present. Renowned Professors from John Hopkins University (USA) and Imperial College (UK) will announce the name of the winning team and the team leader of the development team Capt Akib Zaman will give a presentation on the development procedure and future plan of UVC-PURGE and the team will be awarded a prize of £5,000 GBP as a Prize-Money and grant for their research.
UVC-PURGE is very robust, compact and user friendly in nature. This robot has been equipped with six T5 UVC (254 nm) lamp to destroy SARS-CoV-2 virus (corona virus) effectively in a standard 12' x 16' room with a disinfection time of 2-3 minutes. The Robot provides real-time camera feedback for better navigation. While disinfecting this semi-autonomous robot is capable enough to avoid any obstacles in that room. Being fully wireless controlled by a mobile app or computer, UVC- PURGE is very user-friendly with a 1600 square feet coverage area and provides a battery backup of 2 hours. It is applicable for any indoor environment such as Empty COVID patient ward, Empty ICU, Operation Theatre, Office room, Classroom, Corridor, Personal Apartment, etc. At a market price of less than 800$ UVC-PURGE is extremely cost-effective than similar types of disinfection robots all over the world. This robot will not only effectively fight against the current pandemic but also will be an effective disinfection tool for medical installments in the post-covid world.
Chief Patron of this project was Maj Gen Md Wahid-Uz-Zaman, ndc, aowc, psc, te, the visionary commandant of Military Institute of Science & Technology. The development team was led by Capt Akib Zaman (4th Year, CSE). Team members were Shoeb Ahmed Tanjim (3rd Year, CSE), Shafayetul Islam (3rd Year, CSE), Shah Md Ahasan Siddique (3rd Year, ME), Nafiz Imtiaz Khan (4th Year, CSE), Md Shadman Adeeb (4th Year, CSE), Riasat Haque (2nd Year, CSE), Md Rashid Ul Islam (1st Year, CSE) and M Rayhan Ferdous Faisal (1st Year, CSE).
The Development team has also expressed profound gratitude to Brig Gen Mohammad Sajjad Hossain (Ex Head of the Department), Brig Gen A B M Humayun Kabir (Head of the Department), Col Sidharth Malik (Senior Instructor), and Col Shahjahan Majib (Senior Instructor) from Department of Computer Science & Engineering for their constructive recommendation, professional guidance and whole-hearted supervision. Overall, the development team is indebted to the technical support of Computer Science & Engineering (CSE) Department throughout the project. The development team is eager and determined to work in more projects related with robotics in near future.