IIT Madras Develops Robot to Eliminate Manual Scavenging, Set for Field Deployment in Tamil Nadu

The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras has developed a robot – HomoSEP – that can eliminate manual scavenging in India. Currently assigned to field deployment. A total of ten units are planned to be deployed across Tamil Nadu with researchers already in contact with sanitation workers for positioning. Moreover, sites in Gujarat and Maharashtra are also being considered, according to the institute.

At present, two robots have been distributed to self-help groups led by Nagamma and Ruth Mary whose husbands tragically died during sanitation work, through the support of the NGO SKA. The institute added that the task of further distribution of 9 more units, many of which have already been manufactured according to project plans.

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This robot has been developed over the past several years by a team led by IIT Madras Professor Prabhu Rajagopal, Center for Non-Destructive Assessment, IIT Madras in close contact with sanitation workers, and with the support of the NGO Safai Karamchari Andolan (SKA).

“A septic tank is a toxic environment, filled with semi-solid and semi-liquid human faecal matter that makes up about two-thirds of the tank. Hundreds of deaths are reported every year across India, due to hand rubbish in septic tanks despite the fact that hundreds of deaths are reported every year in septic tanks,” said Professor Prabhu Rajagopal. Prohibitions and Prohibited Orders.

“The HomoSEP project is unique because of the way it brought together key stakeholders, including the university (our team), NGOs, industrial CSR and startups to develop a solution to a pressing and pressing social problem. The problem is undoubtedly large and complex, and we hope that our efforts Serve as an inspiration for others to join this batch.”

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HomoSEP was first developed as a final year master’s project by Divanshu Kumar under the guidance of Professor Rajagopal and featured in the IIT Madras Carbon Zerp Challenge 2019. It has received initial support from IIT Madras’ Social Relevant Projects Initiative. The researchers then collaborated with Solinas Integrity Private Limited, attended by IIT Madras, to develop the robot. It can homogenize the solid sludge in septic tanks through the specially developed rotary blade mechanism and pump out the tank slurry with an integrated suction mechanism.

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