A Roomba for the outdoors uses AI to identify trash and leave nature where it is
Spotted: You may have seen pictures of parks or nature areas after a sunny day with rubbish strewn everywhere. More than an annoyance, rubbish in nature is also a hazard for animal and plant life. However, German company Angsa Robotics has developed an efficient and ecologically friendly way to pick up that litter.
Angsa has developed a robot named Clive that acts like a Roomba for natural spaces. The autonomous robot uses artificial intelligence (AI) to identify litter and leave nature alone. It is able, for example, to distinguish the difference between a leaf and an empty crisp packet. Objects such as bottle caps or cigarette butts are targeted for collection, but insects and stones are spared.
Conventional sweeping machines are designed for flat asphalted surfaces, but Clive can clean both grass and gravel areas, which traditionally need to be cleaned manually. By automating some of the clean-up process, Clive saves money and time, as well as reducing the negative impact of rubbish on the environment.
Angsa is focusing on use cases including festival clean-up and the daily cleaning of parks and other green spaces. Lawnmower manufacturer Husqvarna is a major investor, having recently invested €2.5 million in the company. The funds will be used to accelerate the development and commercialisation of Angsa’s robotics platform.
Robotics, in combination with AI, is delivering an ever-increasing number of innovations focused on sustainability and aiding the environment. In the archive, Springwise has also spotted developments such as robots that clean ships to improve their efficiency and robots that provide chemical-free treatments to plants.
Written By: Lisa Magloff