Dr Senthilmurugan Subbiah, Associate Professor, Department of Chemical Engineering, IIT Guwahati

IIT Guwahati in collaboration with Workspace Metal Solutions has developed a self-check kiosk which will help an individual check for COVID-19 symptoms or any other bacterial infections. The kiosk will help to check for running fever, low blood oxygen levels, while providing 360⁰ disinfection of the belongings through the UV-C chamber. Dr Senthilmurugan Subbiah, Associate Professor, Department of Chemical Engineering, IIT Guwahati reveals more about the kiosk 

Give us a brief about the self-check kiosk developed by IIT Guwahati?

Workspace Metal Solutions has collaborated with IIT-Guwahati to design and develop the device. The self-check kiosk is an integrated, interactive and process-oriented solution for checking vital body parameters like forehead temperature and blood oxygen levels along with automatic hand sanitisation and 360-degree UVC disinfection of luggage and personal belongings. The device helps in creating awareness in an individual by measuring, identifying body parameters within/above permissible limits, thereafter, alerting for any potential COVID-19 risk or any other viral and bacterial infections showing similar symptoms.

The process-oriented and interactive interface guides the operator through a series of activities like forehead temperature measurement, blood oxygen levels, UVC disinfection of luggage and hand sanitisation. The process steps are so defined to ultimately reduce the risk of spread of infection.

The device alerts the operator and security team in both audio (Buzzer alarm) and visual indications (on-screen display) if the vital parameters are below the permissible limits.

What kind of technology was used to develop this kiosk? 

The kiosk is equipped with a series of electronic instruments with associated technologies integrated into a single unit and operated sequentially through inbuilt software.

Few of the functions are :

Temperature sensor: An infrared or thermal imaging scanner for the measurement of forehead temperature.

Camera Sensor: 2 MP Auto Focus camera for capturing the facial image of the operator. The sensor can be upgraded to integrate with Facial recognition software system.

SpO2 Sensor: Optical Pulse oximeter uses two frequencies of light – red and infrared – to determine the percentage of haemoglobin in the blood that is saturated with oxygen, otherwise known as your oxygen saturation level. The sensor housing is equipped with independent UVC light for surface disinfection after each operation.

Sanitiser Unit: Automatic Liquid hand sanitiser unit with hand movement detection using IR sensor.

UVC Chamber: 254 nm wavelength UVC light-based disinfection unit with sensor and timer control based opening and closing respectively.  The unit is equipped with electrical and personal safety features. Integrated CPU with intel processor working on WIN10 OS and inbuilt storage for storing transactional data. An 18.5” IPS display screen for application UI.

The Kiosk is operated through a central processing unit with installed software for sequential operation. The Kiosk works on the application-based platform for operation and display of process steps and output through application UI on the screen. The device interacts with the operator in all the three forms that are verbal instructions, visual written and pictorial instructions.

Where can these kiosks be set up?

These kiosks can be set up in any city across India. This machine is designed to cater to the requirements of various premises such as schools, malls, restaurants, factories, railway stations, airports and corporate offices.

We have not tied up with any of the hospitals; however, the product has been a supplier to premium institutes across India including All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS).

How much was invested? Did you face any challenges while developing it or while taking approvals?

The development of the kiosk was initiated soon after the news of COVID -19 surfaced in India. The main objective was to design and develop such a machine that can provide an integrated and interactive solution for the measurement and checking of symptoms related to the disease and features to reduce the spread of infection. The device should measure, check, display and alert the operator as per the results. Because of the lockdown, sourcing of the components was a major challenge. However, we identified, developed and managed vendors during these tough times.

Additionally, the major challenge was to design and develop a UVC-chamber unit with 360-degree disinfection of luggage surface in at least possible time with zero UVC exposure to the users. Various software and physical models were generated to validate the above requirement.

Multiple prototypes, alteration and iteration to the structure and software were made to fine-tune the process flow and incorporate the feedback received from the customer end. The device is designed in such a way to incorporate various customisations like thermal printers, RFID and facial recognition, Mobile UVC or LED light indicators etc., along with timely upgrade to the software.

Our machine has gone through rigorous quality checks and multiple certifications have been obtained to certify the required quality standards.

How much should one pay for the service?

The product is available in different variants and ranges from 3.5 Lakhs to 7.5 Lakhs.

What will be the future of the self check kiosks post-COVID and tell us about your business model?

It is well assumed that the situation of COVID-19 will remain active for coming years and frequent lockdown is not feasible for economic operation of any organisation.

We have designed this machine to facilitate the regular operation of an organisation. Apart from checking, measuring body parameters and sanitisation, the machine can be upgraded to incorporate attendance or visitor management systems. RFID and facial recognition software systems can be linked with the device for marking regular employee attendance along with storing the vital body health parameters. The kiosk can be linked with the office management system through WiFi and LAN connectivity.

Also, the device can be linked with the Gate Management System for access control and can be programmed to deny access, if the parameters are not within the permissible limits.

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