High-tech help for companies working to reopen safely

Published: Jun. 8, 2020 at 3:49 PM EDT
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The coronavirus pandemic shut down thousands of businesses. Now that places are reopening, companies are trying to figure out how to do it safely and some are embracing the latest technology.

Drones could be valuable players when sports fans eventually return to the stands. The EagleHawk company developed a flying machine to spray COVID-19 killing disinfectant around stadiums and arenas in just a couple of hours.

"Having the drone carry the spray equipment is just much more efficient, so we can cover large sections of seats very quickly," said Patrick Walsh, the founder and CEO of EagleHawk.

Around the world, technologies with UV capability are being developed. A robot at Hong Kong International Airport sprays disinfectant and uses UV light to kill viruses. At Pittsburgh International Airport, a self-driving cleaning machine is also equipped with UV technology.

A Belgian company is developing a UV robot that can disinfect a hospital room in a matter of minutes.

"This robot is really unique on the market. There's no other, as far as we know, concept that is similar that brings both the UV-C light together with the robot that drives itself in a room," said Ivo Schapdryver, the CEO of Medtradex.

But the technology doesn't stop there. A mall in Thailand has a robot that monitors shoppers by taking their temperature.

In South Korea, smart machines are serving coffee. Customers order at a kiosk and the robot barista can create some 60 different kinds of drinks. Tables are placed at a distance and an autonomous cart is used to deliver the order with no human workers required. The business behind the high-tech brew plans to open another 30 cafes in South Korea in the coming months.

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