Enova Robots – Robots for changing the world.
It used to seem impossible for Africans to have Intelligent Machines i.e. Artificial Intelligence to help with their day to day activities. But now, things have taken another direction and lots of things have been simplified with many start-ups specialising in building competent A.I and Intelligent machines and robots to make things easier. Day by day, inventors and innovators are dolling out tech solutions for various need in Africa and the World.
Enova robotics is a typical example of start-ups making germain contributions to the continent. The Tunisian start-up happens to be the first and probably the only manufacturer of intelligent robots in Africa.
Founded in 2014 by former university lecturer in France: Anis Sahbani. Enova is a company specialized in mobile robot development and robotics R&D projects. To its success, the 4-year old start-up has built and sold over sixty robots in four versions.
The dream of establishing a robot company came in when Sahbani was in the Institute of Intelligent Systems and Robotics (ISIR), Pierre University and Marie-Curie, in Paris, where he taught robotics from 2004 to 2013. Unfortunately for him, his salary did not support his big idea.
According to Anis, half of his friends thought he was crazy when he left his job as a university lecturer to start a robot-making startup in Tunisia. In fact, some even thought he was making food processors.
“During my research, I read a lot about the ongoing debates on the compatibility between robots and humans and my goal was to create robots that could help or assist human beings, not replace them,” he opined.
So, he gathered his thoughts together and relocated to his homeland: Tunisia which he left in 1998 to begin start his ideas into practice.
In 2014, Anis Sahbani established Enova Robotics with a capital of 25,000 euros together with two French partners. Enova Robotics as of today has five shareholders – the three founders, a Tunisian private investor and CAP Bank- Anis Sahbani, the CEO, owns half of the shares.
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Since its has been in the business, Enova Robotics has relentlessly help build robots to help humans with their day-to-day activities. With Robots for Education, Security, Healthcare, and Marketing, they have managed to make huge strides in the field.
For Security, it has PearlGuard, a mobile platform for monitoring, alert and security. The robot is a 4-wheel drive mobile base powered by electric motors and batteries allowing it to patrol for up to 8 hours.
To perform its functions, the robot incorporates a set of infrared cameras arranged to cover the entire surrounding of the robot, an omni-directional audio acquisition system, thermal camera and a sound and light alarm system. It is particularly able to automatically detect intrusion. The robot incorporates a GPS to locate in its environment and a laser telemetry system for detection.
To perform its functions, the robot incorporates a set of infrared cameras arranged to cover the entire surrounding of the robot, an omni-directional audio acquisition system, thermal camera and a sound and light alarm system. It is particularly able to automatically detect intrusion.The robot incorporates a GPS to locate and a laser telemetry system to detect.
The remote interface is provided with the robot and is necessary for control. It allows the user to manually control the robot remotely, access all sensors in the robot (stream GPS position, audio and video, heat flow) and utilize the Plan based GPS waypoints round.
The interface also allows to monitor the status of the robot: voltage and battery charge remaining, robot speed, fault detection, status of the communication signal. In the case of an intrusion, a warning message is displayed on the interface with five minutes of audio and video before detection.
See Also: Tunisian Based Robotics Start-up; Enova Secures $1.6 million Investment Round
This is basically built to help the aged who stay alone. The robots have the potential to support older adults as they age in place while acting as a skilled nursing residence.
eTouch-Bot is a robot designed to assist aged people in a Nursing Homes and it is the answer to a predicted shortage of caregivers to serve the rapidly aging population in Tunisia. eTouch-Bot provides telepresence, continuous monitoring and tele-vigilance. A Doctor could connect if necessary and make preliminary diagnostics.
Enova robotics strictly aims for for their robotics system is to catch the eye of high-income customers. That is why they created HelloBot, a mobile robot that provides an engaging space for attendees and ensures event organizers can relax while the robots handle all the details.
And lastly for its education robotics machine, it has Mini-Lab.
This is a robot designed by Professors for professors. It is a medium sized robot optimized for indoor applications. It was designed by people with over a decade experience in teaching and research in mobile robotics field. Mini-Lab offers the best trade-off between robustness and economic competitiveness.
For a comprehensive teaching experience, Mini-Lab ships with pre-made labs, and can be simulated on both Matlab and Gazebo. Its control architecture is open-source and is based on the Robot Operating System (ROS).
Just of recent, the Tunisian based robotics start-up secured $1.6 million investment round from the country’s investment firm; Capsa Capital, which happens to be the largest-funding round for a Tunisian start up. They started with an initial capital of $30,000.
Since it started in 2014, they have sold more than 50 robots all across the worldand their eyes are now set at selling $30 million worth of robots. The start-up currently has more than twenty contributing engineers in Tunisia.
Enova Robotics won two awards at the International Invention Fair in Kuwait —- Middle East, a Gold medal from the World Intellectual Property Organization and lots more.
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