Robots at Singapore’s Changi General Hospital are learning much needed communications skills.
The hospital uses about 50 robots from eight different manufacturers to perform a variety of tasks including assisting with surgery, cleaning, monitoring COVID isolation patients, and overseeing patients’ rehabilitation exercises. Unfortunately, these robots could not communicate with each other, and hallway traffic jams occurred several times a day.
Two robots moving towards each other in a hallway would meet and freeze up, not knowing how to navigate around an object or person. They would be stuck there in limbo until a hospital worker arrived to get them back on track. Open Robotics’ free software programs now help the robots communicate better with each other. This promising approach is much needed as more and more robots enter the workplace.
- Alexandra Hospital using robot technology to inspect COVID-19 patients in isolation (Mar 5, 2020, CNA)
- How ROS Industrial is Making Machines and Robots Talk to Each Other (Jan 30, 2019, engineeringdotcom)
- Cleaning robots that can ‘wink’ and ‘joke’ to start work in Singapore by March 2020 (Jul 17, 2019, CNA)