In an interview with robotics doctor Anis Sahbani, CEO of “Enova Robotics” company and inventor of the security robot “Pearl guard”, we learned that this robot, invented in 2015, is a first in the world. This invention won in Tunisia the first prize in the national competition for inventions and was also awarded abroad at the International Trade Shows for Inventions organized notably in Cairo (2016), France, Geneva, Austria and Kuwait (in 2017).
“Enova-Robotics” is a public limited company located in the “Soft-Tech” business incubator of the Sousse competitive cluster and founded in July 2014 by doctor of robotics Anis Sahbani. Enova Robotics now has 12 permanent engineers specializing in Information Tehnology (IT), mechatronics and design as well as a dozen trainees. This company is, in fact, the first company in Africa and in the world to manufacture its own brand of robot. Indeed, the security robot “Pearl guard” invented in 2015 was awarded in Tunisia and won first prize at the national competition of inventions. He was awarded abroad at the International Inventions Trade Shows organized in Cairo (2016), France, Geneva, Austria and Kuwait in 2017.
About this invention, Dr. Anis Sahbani, gave an interview to Tunisian ” la Presse” daily newspaper to brief us of this invention that extended pride to Tunisia.
The robot in question is achieved thanks to a team work. What is your contribution in this invention?
The idea of inventing this kind of security robot “Pearl guard” is personal whereas its achievement required a team work. The uniqueness of this product is based essentially on a robust and reliable mechanics and sharp algorithms (computer programmes) of artificial intelligence.
In order for the robot to navigate autonomously, increased localisation accuracy is required. This location is achieved thanks to the module called “Global Positioning System” (GPS) which is available with a precision greater than 10 m, not allowing the robot autonomous navigation. We then developed at Enova-Robotics algorithms that ensure a centimetre-based robot location that allows it to navigate and make decisions autonomously (alert, defensive or attack behaviour, bypass and obstacle avoidance).
What is the main role of the robot and how does it work?
The idea of inventing this robot comes from an analysis of a set of numbers and factors. For example, in the United States in 2017, one million “man-hours” are required each night for patrol missions and reporting (safety reporting), in dangerous environments and in bad-weather conditions (storms). , thunderstorms…). This is how the robot comes to assist the man in his mission. The guard officer remains in the command post while the robot patrols and sends digital reports and detected images and sounds. The man has only to indicate the sensitive points on an interface (map of the site to be watched) and by which the robot must obligatorily pass during its rounds.
What will future research in robotics field focus on?
We will increase the capabilities of the current robot in terms of crossing various types of terrain with the introduction of new versions with caterpillars and in terms of action with the introduction of blinding flash and dense smoke giving it the opportunity to slow down any intrusion. We are going to invent a new robot operating in the field of health to reinforce the lost social bond of isolated elderly people.
Are there particular secrets for the engineer to become an inventor?
To tell the truth, there are no secrets. In front of a problem having no solution, the engineer has to invent it. The only limitation of the engineer lies in the brakes he puts on his imagination.
What are the future prospects for Enova Robotics?
In this world, one can be a consumer or producer of technology. We chose Enova Robotics and therefore in Tunisia to be producers of this technology that is exported to Europe and the Middle East. Enova Robotics aims to be the world leader in the field of robotics by 2020. I would like to point out that the Enova Robotics plant will be ready by the beginning of next year 2019 and will be located at the “Technopôle” in Sousse.
TunisianMonitorOnline (Interviewed by Hichem Benzarti – La Presse – and Translated by TunisianMonitorOnline (MNHN)