Robots are being deployed to clean plane cabins during the pandemic

United Airlines has revealed it is using high-tech robot cleaners to spray its plane cabins with antimicrobial spray during the coronavirus pandemic.

The airline shared a video of one of its deep-cleaning robots, named the NovaRover, as it made its way down the aisle of one of the company’s aircrafts, disinfecting the cabin as it went.

An accompanying caption explained: “Meet our friendly new deep-cleaning robot, NovaRover! It’s working hard to keep our planes clean with an antimicrobial spray, which forms a long-lasting protective barrier on aircraft surfaces.”

The NovaRover works by spraying a super fine mist which can coat all surfaces within a 12-foot radius, all in one spray.

The NovaRover sprays the plane cabins

The robot sprays the cabin with Zoono Microbe Shield, which forms an antimicrobial coating on heaps of surfaces including the seats, tray tables, armrests, overhead bins, lavatories and crew stations.

The spray is created by Zoono Group Limited, a New Zealand Company and distributed in the USA by MicroSonic Solutions.

The airline said it expects to apply the new spray overnight every seven days to ‘refresh and fortify the protective layer’.

The robot sprays surfaces within a 12ft-radius

The new measure comes alongside existing health and safety precautions which the company implements during the pandemic.

These include social distancing, temperature checks for employees and flight attendants, sneeze guards at check-in desks, disinfecting high-touch areas such as tray tables and armrests, as well as mandatory masks for cabin crew and passengers.

Currently, the NovaRovers are being used on aircraft at Chicago O’Hare International Airport, but the airline plans to deploy the robots to ten airports and across its network.

The new spray will be alongside the other cleaning measures the airline implemented

“This long-lasting, antimicrobial spray adds an extra level of protection on our aircraft to help better protect our employees and customers.

Toby Enqvist, United’s Chief Customer Officer, said: “This long-lasting, antimicrobial spray adds an extra level of protection on our aircraft to help better protect our employees and customers.

Airplane seat

“As part of our layered approach to safety, antimicrobials are an effective complement to our hospital-grade HEPA air filtration system, mandatory mask policy for customers and daily electrostatic spraying.

“We’ve overhauled our policies and procedures and continue to implement new, innovative solutions that deliver a safer onboard experience.”

You can find out more on the United Airlines website.


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