For those catching up, we’re involved in a project called CHIRON which stands for Care at Home using Intelligent Robotic Omni-functional Nodes. Don’t let the name scare you away because what we set out to do is to design care robotics to help solve an issue that will impact at least one person you know.
Caring for our ageing population is already becoming a greater load on our NHS and Social Care resources as the UK struggles to pay for all the adequate care needed. Not limited to the UK, this is an issue worldwide as the number of people over 65 is expected to rise to more than 1.6 billion by 2050. Even if they could be paid for, there won’t be enough carers to go around. There are simply not enough money or people to staff them properly and the result is paralysing the NHS, blocking beds and causing premature and unfortunate deaths.
CHIRON is a two-year project (which ran from March 2016 to February 2018) funded by Innovate UK to design care robotics for the future with a focus on dignity, independence, and choice. Having spent £2 Million researching and developing a solution to averting a demographic disaster, we’ve come up with a prototype modular robotic system with the brand name of JUVA. JUVA can help take on heavy lifting tasks, help you get ready for the day and do essential jobs around the home including fetching objects and preparing daily meals. It can also be deployed in Nursing Homes and in hospitals where staff could nurse instead of doing the lifting and increase productivity.
Here at the Shadow Robot Company, we are extremely proud of this project and while we could shout about it so much more in this post, there’s a fully-fledged website dedicated to CHIRON here.
What is necessary to mention is our sincere thanks to our many partners, listed below, who made this possible. Much more than just a collaboration, the support we’ve provided one another has resulted in something that can positively impact the lives of hundreds of thousands of people from those needing care, to those working in care homes, to care charities, to social care organisations and housing.
We’re also positively impacting those involved in robotic technology and AI and those informing Government policies. Together we succeeded to create something that has potential to enter a more dynamic and flexible market, offering people greater choice in the care sector when they require it.
As we come to an end on working with our partners on the CHIRON project, the results from the research and development we’ve collaboratively done remain extremely relevant and vital for the years ahead. You can join us as we share our findings on April 12th at our CHIRON Project Conference. There’s still time to register.
To show your support and to keep up with future updates on our CHIRON project, follow the project on twitter: @chironproject
The project was managed by a consortium led by Designability. We, Shadow Robot Company were a key technology partner along with Bristol Robotics Laboratory, as we both have considerable expertise in conducting pioneering research and development in robotics. Award-winning social enterprise care provider, Three Sisters Care brought user-centered design to the very core of the CHIRON project. Smart Homes & Buildings Association worked to introduce the range of devices that will create CHIRON and make it an indispensable presence in our homes. The funding for this project has been awarded by Innovate UK’s Long Term Care Revolution SBRI national challenge which aims to revolutionise long-term care in the UK through business-led innovation.