Machines that actually care!
The CHIRON consortium are aiming to revolutionise long-term care with exciting robotic technology.
“Robots in care? You must be joking!”
We hear this phrase almost every day and we recognise that this is an area where we need to do a lot of convincing. However, we are really excited by the possibilities that robotics can offer.
The CHIRON consortium is a somewhat unlikely group of experts and professionals from across the UK.
- Designability: the lead partner. A research and development charity that designs products especially for people with disabilities.
- Three Sisters Care: care sector representative. An award-winning provider who offers expertise and access to end-users and carers.
- Bristol Robotics Lab: our first robotics partner. Leaders in care related robotics and even has a model bedsit in the Lab to test products for domestic settings
- The Shadow Robot Company : our second robotic partner who are at the forefront of robotic design
- Smart Homes and Buildings Association: brings strategic and commercial experience in assistive technologies. They ensure we are embedded in actual market trends.
- Telemetry Associates: will manage the project. They truly understand the challenges of bringing together such a diverse group of people and ensuring we achieve our aims.
Cross-sector participation essential to delivering a valuable solution
Jobeda Ali from Three Sisters Care was the driving force behind the CHIRON consortium. Jobeda has a passion for technology and robotics and is fascinated by the possibilities it offers within a care environment.
She came across Innovate UK’s Long Term Care Revolution challenge and was amazed that Innovate UK was actively encouraging care providers to apply and be involved.
She attended a couple of events and it became suddenly clear that she was the only care provider in the room. She also realised that the participation of someone from the care sector within the challenge, alongside the technology experts, was fundamental to delivering a truly meaningful solution.
End users will drive the robotic design
Right from the offset, we will be working with carers, end users and their families. These Pioneers, as we will be calling them, will be the end users of the product we will develop, but more importantly they will drive the design; they’ll be telling the roboticists what is realistic and what is desirable.
Developing an assistive robotic system
We will be developing an assistive robotic system, which can be adapted to different assistive tasks. CHIRON’s various components will be designed to be mixed and matched. This will enable the person using CHIRON to undertake a wide range of domestic and self-care tasks independently, which for some people could mean that their carer would then have more time to spend providing valuable social companionship.
Robotic solution that offers adaptability to a person’s changing needs
The project will create a prototype that will lead to the development of a commercially viable product. The project will draw upon the consortium’s expertise of working with end-users, clinicians, and health and social care providers, to develop an effective robotic solution that offers adaptability to a person’s changing needs.
Enthusiasm in the care sector
The process of spreading this enthusiasm across the care sector has already started. Jobeda gave a talk to a Care Quality Commission conference – the response was very positive. We look forward to sharing our vision wider still.
To learn more about CHIRON please contact the lead partner Designability:
- Visit our website: www.designability.org.uk
- More information about CHIRON project
- Email us: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Call us: 01225 824103
- Follow us on Twitter: @DesignabilityUK
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