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With "Manni" against viruses: DB tests cleaning robot at Frankfurt main station

26.02.2021 | 15:30 Clock | Business
With 'Manni' against viruses: DB tests cleaning robot at Frankfurt main station

Deutsche Bahn wants to use innovative technology to ensure greater cleanliness at Frankfurt's main station in the fight against Corona. To this end, DV is currently testing the autonomous cleaning vehicle "Manni". The rolling robot from the Berlin start-up Spring Mobility will support DB's cleaning staff in their work until the end of April. The vehicle can sweep floor surfaces and neutralize viruses using ozonized water. Ozonated water is a natural disinfectant and, according to the manufacturer, is also highly effective in combating corona viruses and bacteria.

Leif Niklas Wulf, station manager at Frankfurt Central Station, says of the test: "Clean stations contribute significantly to the well-being of all travellers and guests. With the robot, we are testing an innovative way to support and relieve our cleaning staff. The smart assistant cleans and disinfects around 12,000 square meters a day at Frankfurt Central Station. Therefore: clear the way for innovation!"

With the help of two laser and ten ultrasonic sensors, five cameras and two GPS antennas, "Manni" navigates independently through the underground area of Frankfurt Central Station. This means that the cleaning vehicle incorporates the same sophisticated technology as, for example, autonomously driving cars. Manni detects obstacles at an early stage during cleaning. He drives around them or stops the cleaning process briefly and resumes it as soon as the way is clear again. Even larger litter lying around, such as beverage cans, is no problem for the new helper.

The autonomous robot received its name from its DB colleagues. Four name suggestions were shortlisted and went to the internal vote, in which around 800 employees took part. "Manni" was the clear winner with over 500 votes. During the test period until the end of April, "Manni" will always be accompanied by a DB supervisor. DB will then evaluate the test operation and decide on further deployment options.

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