Medical Robotics for Contagious Diseases Challenge 2020
In 2020 the UK-RAS announced their inaugural Medical Robotics Challenge for Contagious Diseases Challenge.
The outbreak of SARS-CoV-2 in late 2019 sparked a global health crisis and the robotics research and innovation communities has formed an integral part of our response.
Across the world, robots and drones are being repurposed and deployed as part of the COVID-19 response. There are robots disinfecting hospitals; automated systems supporting the testing of millions of people quickly and reliably; robots undertaking infection control and operating on patients; and robotic platforms delivering medical supplies and food to the most vulnerable. In the case of clinical care, areas of specific importance include disease prevention, diagnosis and screening, and patient care and disease management.
The winners in each category were unveiled at a virtual award ceremony held in February 2021, with each winning team receiving prize money of £5000 generously donated by The Wellcome Trust and Intuitive Surgical.
The winners were decided, from a shortlist of 17 exceptional submissions, by a prestigious judging panel, including Professor the Lord Darzi of Denham, Co-Director of IGHI, Professor of Surgery at Imperial College London, UK; Simon Di Maio, Director, Research at Intuitive Surgical, USA; Prof. Russell H. Taylor, John C. Malone Professor at John’s Hopkins University, USA; and Dr. Thomas Neff, Manager Software Medical Robotics at KUKA Deutschland GmbH, De.
‘UVC-PURGE: A Semi-autonomous Virus Disinfection Robot’ by the team at Military Institute of Science & Technology (MIST).
Runner Up: ‘Teleoperated wheelchair with isolation hood’ by the team at Amrita Viswa Vidyapeetham (Amrita University).
‘Telerobotics for Remote Control of Medical Equipment in Contagious Environments’ by the team at Johns Hopkins University.
Runner Up: ‘Towards Affordable Soft Robotic Bronchoscopy’ by the team at Imperial College London and Institut Teknologi Bandung.
‘An Intelligent Robotic System for Automated Precision Disinfection in Public Spaces’ by the team at Leeds University.
Runner Up: ‘A master-slave robotic system for both endotracheal intubation and bronchoscopy for the treatment of COVID-19’ by the team at Tianjin University.
“The engagement of the world’s leading robotics researchers with this Challenge has been nothing short of incredible, and the quality of the entries we received really underscore the vital contribution that is being made by robotics platforms during this pandemic in delivering solutions for the global community. The entire UK-RAS team and our superb judging panel offer our congratulations to the winners, runners-up, and all the teams who took part in this unique competition, which is going to provide an important launchpad for pandemic response innovations as we look beyond the immediate crisis to addressing future public health challenges.”Professor Robert Richardson, Chair of the EPSRC UK-RAS Network
This unique challenge attracted 21 entries from 13 countries – Bangladesh, China, Colombia, Germany, India, Indonesia, Iran, Israel, Mexico, Pakistan, Uganda, UK and USA.
Professor the Lord Darzi of Denham
Co-Director of IGHI, Professor of Surgery
Imperial College London, UK
Simon Di Maio
Intuitive Surgical, USA
Prof. Russell H. Taylor
John C. Malone Professor
John’s Hopkins University, USA
Dr. Thomas Neff
Manager Software Medical Robotics
KUKA Deutschland GmbH, De
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