Autonomous robots appear at major express bus terminal to check body temperature

Park Sae-jin Reporter() | Posted : September 22, 2020, 10:59 | Updated : September 22, 2020, 10:59

[Courtesy of Seocho District Office]

SEOUL -- Ahead of Chuseok, a three-day harvest festival which has seen millions of city dwellers visiting hometowns, autonomous robots appeared at express bus terminals in Seoul to check the body temperature of visitors and passengers to prevent COVID-19 virus carriers from moving to other parts of South Korea.

Since the outbreak of COVID-19 in South Korea, the government has issued strict quarantine guidelines for the operators of multi-use facilities such as restaurants, cafes and shopping malls to check the body temperature of visitors. Visitors were also required to write down personal contact or register with personalized QR codes, which are square-shaped digital bar codes, for an easy epidemiological survey.

Seocho District in southern Seoul said in a statement that it has deployed artificial intelligence-based autonomous robots equipped with sensors, non-contact thermometers and cameras to check the body temperature of visitors at three express bus terminals including a big one used by some 34,000 people every day.

District officials said that autonomous robots were deployed ahead of Chuseok, which is one of South Korea's biggest holidays, to stop those showing symptoms of COVID-19 from infecting other passengers. At terminal gateways, visitors can check their body temperature displayed on the monitors of robots which also ask people to wear masks properly.

In South Korea, it is not rare to see autonomous robots roaming through multi-use facilities including hospitals. the Seoul Medical Center in eastern Seoul deployed six autonomous robots in July to help medical personnel focus on the treatment of patients. Three different types of robots were deployed to check body temperature, sterilize equipment inside negative-pressure wards using ultraviolet light and collect medical waste such as used hospital gowns.

At multi-use facilities, it is also common to see digital kiosks equipped with thermal imaging cameras and monitors. Visitors can check their body temperature before registering with personalized QR codes. If the body temperature is measured higher than 37.5 degrees Celsius, any visitors are not allowed to enter.
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