Robots for diagnostics and surface sanitation, a chat-bot integrated into the MOH’s online portal for providing public consulting support during the pandemic, contactless terminal for body temperature measurement, pass control management platform to be used during quarantine restrictions. Those solutions developed by Skolkovo residents (but not only by them) and aimed at combating the virus and mitigating outbreak consequences were demonstrated during TASS online press-conference In particular, it was emphasized that all the projects feature a high degree of availability - implying that the solutions are not just prototypes, but products available for implementation right now.

Representatives from Promobot, a Perm-based Skolkovo resident, presented three anti-COVID solutions, which was the largest number among the other conference participants. Their products included Promobot V.4 - a diagnostics robot which is an autonomous terminal for contactless measurement of body temperature, and Scorpio - a sanitation bot. “No would-be prototypes, only finished robots which are ready to help us in combating COVID-19 already now,” Alexey Yuzhakov, Promobot’s Chairman of the Board says.

Autonomous terminal for contactless measurement of body temperature. Photo: PROMOBOT.

Alexey Vronskiy, a primary care doctor and a cardiovascular surgeon, presented the first out of Promobot’s new products - a public health screening terminal. “Promobot V.4 is not a replacement for an ordinary doctor, and it isn’t supposed to be. Its major task is to support doctors during the mass screening, carrying out individual stages of health check-up, for the initial contact with COVID-positive patient,” Mr.Vronskiy explained. Diagnostic robot interviews the patient about his or her symptoms to compare them with COVID-19 initial signs, measures the body temperature and other health indicators (blood sugar and oxygen levels, lungs volume) The robot is 100% autonomous, it is able to remember and recognize human faces, print out the diagnostics results and recommendations.

“The robot is able to interview patients about their symptoms, collect primary information, perform instrumental research, analyse the information and produce the result. This is a finished product, it has been tested at major exhibitions," Alexey Vronskiy said. “It took the robot a few days to handle over 1,000 patients. The average screening time was 3 minutes.”

Diagnostic robot. Photo: PROMOBOT.

It is noteworthy that PROMOBOT V.4 for diagnostic applications is available for order right now. According to Alexey Yuzhakov, its price depends on the scope of functionality and varies from RUB 1.5 mln to 2.5 mln.

Another Promobot’s solution - Scorpio sanitation robot - features the same high availability for order. Tracks, a rotating top part with a sprayer and a tank with a sanitation liquid make this robot look like a small tank. The robot is operated remotely, this was demonstrated by Igor Eremeev, Promobot’s CTO, during the trial run. Scorpio is able to move forward not only on even surfaces, it can easy climb the stairs and street curbs spraying the sanitizing liquid. It can spray the sanitizer at a distance of up to 10 metres and operates without recharging up to 4 hours. Promobot is ready to deliver up to 20 robots like these per month at a price starting from RUB 2 mln for each.

The third of the company’s new products Promobot’s engineers presented to the audience during TASS live online conference, was an autonomous terminal for contactless measurement of body temperature. According to Alexey Yuzhakov, their Thermocontrol solution is primarily intended for continuously running enterprises for measuring and recording the body temperature of employees when passing through the check points.

The measurement takes 2-5 seconds, and the result is rather accurate (+/- 0.2 degrees). The terminal is operator-free which minimizes the risk of contagion. The terminal saves the measurement records and provides a warning to the security department about visitors with abnormal body temperature. The basic version includes a screen to display the warnings and temperature measurements, and the advanced version features a facial recognition system, which can further be integrated with the enterprise security systems.

A. Mr. Yuzhakov is convinced that advanced temperature measurement terminals are part of future security infrastructure. “Terminals like these are unlikely to be out of demand after the outbreak is over. We are going to get used to them, the same way as we did with metal detector frames and video surveillance cameras,” the Chairman of Promobot’s Board of Directors said.

During TASS press conference.

The office of Unicorn - another Perm-based startup and Skolkovo resident - is located nextdoor to Promobot’s office. This team deals not with robotics but with cloud-based integration platforms for smart buildings. During the period of COVID-19 outbreak the Unicorn’s engineers focused on the solutions for pass control managements inside the cities.

“Our technology is aimed at fast deployment of QR-based passes. This is a simple and intuitive product with an easy-to-understand interface, meant for efficient monitoring of pass control procedure, for us to be confident that only authorized people are able to move around the city. As for the city dwellers, the new platform will make them feel more comfortable during the self-isolation period,” Svetlana Perminova, Unicorn’s CEO, says. Svetlana Perminova forecasts that after COVID-19 outbreak is over, the platform can easily be converted into the smart system of housing and public utilities management.

Itorum MR, a Skolkovo resident in IT Cluster, is working on VR and AR solutions for industrial enterprises. As Renat Khayrullin, Itorum’s product manager, said, today this technology can be transformed to meet the need of telemedicine.

We are talking about the Remote Expert information support suite. This is an audio and visual communication channel between the doctor on-site and the participants of a medical case conference. One more field of application is arranging remote interaction at enterprises when performing operational tasks. “A doctor or some other specialist on-site is wearing AR-glasses. This makes it possible for the expert to remotely see the same picture as the specialist does on-site. This is a cloud-based solution where Russian-based servers are used, so no legislative issues will occur,” Renat Khayrullin declared.

NPO Android Technics (Skolkovo non-resident) has impressive experience in designing robotic systems (almost 100 systems have been produced over 11 years of the company’s history), including medical ones. For example, the pilot production of Gefest robotized wheelchairs has started. An electro-mechanical HCI-controlled exoskeleton of the human hand is produced in series for postapoplectic rehabilitation. This system has been tested by Russian clinics, such as Russian National Research Medical University named after N.I. Pirogov, Moscow Regional Research Institute named After M. F. Vladimirskiy, St. Luke's Clinical Multidisciplinary Medical Centre.

SR-201 robotic system can be used to support combating COVID-19. Yevgeny Duderov, Executive Director of NPO Android Technics, told about this system during TASS live online conference. The system is intended for diagnostics of patients’ health status, remote consulting support and monitoring, including the monitoring of compliance with hospital regulations, distribution of medications and meals, disinfection of indoor air, and for improving the patients’ emotional status by offering them a possibility to remotely communicate with their families.

Gefest - a robotized wheelchair for social adaptation of disabled persons. Photo: NPO Android Technics.

According to E.Duderov, their product is aimed at reducing the load on medical staff, and at minimizing the contacts with infected patients. Today this system is being tested. “The robot is a versatile assistant, but it has to be taught to do some specific tasks,” the company’s Executive Director summarized.

Providing consulting support to an immense number of Russians who are worried about COVID-19 is rather an important issue, and this is the function assigned to a chat-bot developed by Nanosemantika engineers. As Maxim Melnikov, the Head of Project Development Department says, an AI-based virtual consultant has been developed in record time and has already been implemented on one of the MOH’s online portals. “In a pandemic, quarantine, or emergency situation, it is critical to have up-to-date information about what is happening. Virtual assistant is a single resource for receiving and processing the incoming messages. The chat-bot replies to those questions for which it knows the answer. In case the chat-bot is not able to give an answer, it will switch the client to the operator,” M. Melnikov explained.