Tired of cleaning your house? You might not have to do it much longer, thanks to flying robot maids. A new cleaning concept system that relies on flying mini-robots won the 2013 Electrolux Design Lab Competition, and it seems feasible with current technology.
The Mab system was designed by Adrian Perez Zapata, an industrial design student from Colombia. As part of the competition, Zapata had to show his concept and include proof of concept and feasibility, and through each round of development he was given helpful critiques from Electrolux designers. Zapata describes Mab as “an automated cleaning system, consisting of hundreds of micro-robots. With this self-contained cleaning solution, the user can escape the everyday chores to experience a little bit of magic and utopia.”
According to Zapata, a programmable central unit would deploy hundreds of flying mini-robots to drop water onto surfaces around the house. Such a design could be possible if current research at Harvard, focusing on work involving robotic insects, compact fuel cells and solar panels, pans out. The user would be able to program the main unit of Mab and the core would communicate wirelessly with the mini-robots. The unit would be able to scan a person’s home to determine what areas need to be cleaned.
Other innovative entries in the competition included several futuristic food applications and air-purification systems. Nutrima was a foldable mat that lets users calculate freshness, calories and possible toxicity of their food. Global Chef allowed for interactive cooking sessions with relatives or chefs from around the world. Kitchen Hub would let users create a virtual pantry, providing an inventory of ingredients and their expiration dates. Atomium would be a 3D food printer. The OZ-1 concept was a necklace that doubled as an air purifier and stress reliever. The Breathing Wall concept would be able to adapt to different needs and would purify and clean the air based on a user’s preference. The 3F vacuum concept would change shape based on the user’s needs and would be remote-controlled and programmed.
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The Atomium concept finished in second place and third place went to the Breathing Wall concept. The first prize was 5,000 euros and a six-month internship at the Electrolux design center, reports Phys.org. Second place earned 3,000 euros and third place, 2,000 euros. Zapata also received another 1,000 euros for winning the People’s Choice prize.
A video of the Mab concept can be viewed below.