To help improve efficiency, enhance social distancing and support human workers, Hong Kong will be deploying a team of 5 robots at the Kai Tak train station later this year. The MTR Corp is currently working on the Finder-T, Guider-T, Checker-T, and two types of Cleaner-T robots. The robots are equipped with AI that can learn new skills over time.
The Finder-T and Guider-T robots will answer passenger questions and help guide them in the their journey. They’ll lead passengers to places like entrances, exits, and bathrooms. The bots can also identify and point out oversized luggage and travelers in wheelchairs who may need extra assistance. Safety messages will also be able to be broadcasted from each unit.
Checker-T will patrol the station at night using image analysis to make sure things like doors, lighting, and signs are all in working order. If anything seems to be in less than satisfactory condition, station employees will be alerted.
The Cleaner-T bots will clean the station autonomously after hours. Users will be able to map a custom cleaning path and view reports after each session. Using a specialized filtration system, the bots will use less than half the volume of water than when cleaning is done manually.
Hong Kong MTR Using UnderFrame Inspection Robot
Along with the five robots, MTR’s maintenance staff is also incorporating an underframe inspection robot which can scan the underframe of trains using image recognition and AI. If any issues are found, the robot will alert maintenance staff.
According to the MTR, the robots are still in the development stage as they are still being tested and properly programmed. Officials are figuring out the best ways the robots can enhance station services and also plan to collect passenger feedback.
“MTR has been making use of new technology and equipment to assist staff in daily routine tasks and enhancing efficiency. Technology enables our station operation team to enhance customer service delivery, and the maintenance team on coming up with more forward-looking maintenance measures using big data and real-time monitoring,” said MTR operations director, Dr. Tony Lee.
Check out our articles on robots checking for COVID-19 symptoms in Japan and robots screening passengers at Abu Dhabi’s airport.