Advancing the Design of UV Disinfection Robots

by | Oct 26, 2022 | Articles, Disinfection

A behind-the-scenes look at what goes into designing UV disinfection robots.

Steve Jobs once said, “Design is a funny word. Some people think design means how it looks. But of course, if you dig deeper, it’s really how it works.” Likewise, when we set out to enter the world of UV disinfection robots, we knew that the build & operation of our OhmniClean robot were just as important as any aesthetic appeal. And, in fact, the two should be complementary to the overall function of the product. On that note, let’s take a look at some of the intentions behind our design choices and how they all coalesce to make OhmniClean the world’s premier disinfection robot.

Gathering Information on Current UV Disinfection Robots

Before iterating and crafting, we wanted to ensure we had plenty of consultations with real performant operators in the healthcare industry. We met with EVS team members, infection control specialists, and a variety of other healthcare individuals to determine what issues they’d experienced with legacy UV disinfection robots and what features they’d like to see in future solutions. Taking everything they told us, we dove in and began building an effective and easy-to-use disinfection robot.

Ergonomics of UV Disinfection Robots

One of the more common complaints we received about legacy UV disinfection robots surrounded ergonomics. Staff members reported that, due to the heavy and bulky build of these emitters, operating them was rather cumbersome. Even worse, transporting these large pieces of equipment had occasionally led to injury for the operator.

A panel of images showing the use of UV disinfection robots

To ease this burden, we deliberately designed OhmniClean to be physically easy to use and transport. At only 59 lbs, the lightweight machine is extremely mobile. The handle is positioned at standard counter height, making for comfortable arm and shoulder positioning, and features a wide offset from the base allowing the operator to walk naturally while maneuvering the unit.

Digital renderings of UV disinfection robots

On top of that, the entire unit is modular, being able to break down into separate parts for further ease of transportation.

Drivetrain

Of course, don’t let the compact design fool you: OhmniClean still packs a powerful punch. In addition to six UV-C lightbulbs – scientifically proven to eliminate over 99.99% of HAI-causing pathogens – the robot’s drivetrain is designed to facilitate the disinfection process quickly.

Lo-fi renderings of components for UV disinfection robots

The differential direct drive allows for precise navigation, even through tight quarters, and removes a significant number of wear components commonly found in more conventional drivetrains. Further, this innovative drivetrain is optimized for extended battery life, allowing for near-zero downtime and around-the-clock disinfection.

Durable Construction 

With demand for disinfection higher than ever before, it’s expected for UV disinfection robots to be subjected to heavy use, and often within rushed, perhaps stressful, conditions. For that reason, we wanted to make sure that OhmniClean was constructed for longevity in even the harshest of circumstances.

Assembled using a variety of aluminum and magnesium alloys, the material composition of the primary chassis is fused in an ideal strength-to-weight ratio, maximizing robustness while still maintaining the lightweight which is crucial for easy use and transportation. The base is built with shock-absorbing, non-marring plastics to minimize any damage to the unit or environment, and the wheels are similarly manufactured to prevent scuffing.

A technician constructing one of OhmniLabs' UV disinfection robots

This construction – borrowing from techniques used in formula racing vehicles – creates a sturdy unit that can withstand loads of up to 5x its own weight, and through a variety of collision and fall tests, OhmniClean can answer the call from even the most rigorous of operators.

Ancillary Equipment of UV Disinfection Robots

Another frequent complaint from cleaning crews utilizing UV disinfection robots was that the ancillary equipment was difficult to keep up with and manage. For instance, operating tablets and safety sensors were often required to be charged separately from the UV emitter, leading to frequent misplacements or improper charging, rendering them unusable.

Our UV disinfection robots have a special mount for all tablets

But with OhmniClean, we built everything into the unit itself. Specially designed mounts keep ancillary equipment contained in a single location, with all tablets and safety sensors able to charge in tandem with the emitter. This design feature helps ensure that no disinfection is delayed.

Assembly & Quality Control

As is the case with all our products, OhmniClean is assembled in-house at our headquarters in Silicon Valley. This first-hand approach allows us to monitor the construction from start to finish, verifying that no portion is skipped or skimped.

A technician assembles one of OhmniLabs' uv disinfection robots

Upon completion, each of our UV disinfection robots must pass an internal 120-point inspection twice prior to shipment, assuring quality and long-term operation of the unit.

More Than Just A Robot

OhmniClean is designed and built to provide you with effective and easy-to-use disinfection right out of the box. But our efforts didn’t stop there. Unlike other UV disinfection robots, OhmniClean requires minimal maintenance, and the occasional task, such as changing a lightbulb, can be completed quickly and with only a single screwdriver. You also have access to our robust support team, always standing by and ready to answer any questions you may have regarding the unit. By choosing OhmniClean, you’ll be ready to tackle the disinfection needs of both today and tomorrow.

Want to see how this innovative technology can help your organization?

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