A company that has designed a robot for applying insulation underneath flooring in old houses has received funding to commercialise its idea.
The majority of the houses in the UK that date from the 19th century and early 20th century have suspended timber floorboards, which are poorly insulated, but current methods to rectify the problem are expensive, time-consuming and disruptive, requiring residents to move out of their home.
By entering the narrow space between the floorboards and the ground, the robotics platform created by Q-BOT can spray insulation in a place that human workers cannot reach. While the device has been designed for a very specific purpose the technology could be adapted to access, survey, evaluate and apply treatments in a wide range of other industries and applications.
Ilian Iliev, CEO of EcoMachines Incubator, the seed fund that has provided Q-BOT with the funding to commercialise their concept, said: "We are at the early stages of a transformation in the building and infrastructure industries, a game-changing development that will see the use of collaborative semi-autonomous robots to assist us in a range of tasks too dangerous, time-consuming or expensive for humans alone to perform.
“We have invested in Q-BOT because of the enormous potential of the company to be a leader in this sector. The team has the expertise, dedication and drive to grow a successful company."
Using the platform, the operator directs the robots to perform a survey of the target area, but the robots make their own assessments about the best way to apply the required treatment to the particular location, whether insulation or another enhancement.
Q-BOT is exploring a pipeline of other valuable market applications that can be addressed through its platform in the building and infrastructure industries.
Mathew Holloway, managing director of Q-BOT, said "EcoMachines have really helped us with their initial investment and the guidance and expertise they have made available to us. They are ideal partners for Q-BOT who share our vision for the future of robotics in the building industry."