Heating our homes in winter consumes vast amounts of energy and costs households a great deal.
But imagine if there were a robot that could store heat and then moved around the house to warm cold areas? Drum roll please for…..Hagent, the mobile heater robot.
This small robot shaped like a black box is amde up of movable wheels, sensors and Phase change materials (PCM). PCM absorb heat from a hot body and change their phase (from solid to liquid or vice versa) and then release the heat by again changing their phase.
Designed by Andreas Meinhardt and Daniel Abendrith this mobile heater robot can move on its own. It can identify hot regions inside the home like ovens, electronic devices or a fireplace. This is made possible with the help of its heat sensors.
After sensing hot regions, it automatically moves near the hot object and hangs out there for a while until the PCM inside it fully absorbs as much heat as possible. Then it identifies and moves to cold regions like the bedroom and gives out warmth. Once it loses all its energy it hunts for free heat once again.
The first prototype which looked similar to a Segway control unit was exhibited in October 2011 in Paris. With the addition of sensors, the second prototype became self-functioning and movable. When it was tested, Hagen tno longer crashed into things which was the major problem in the previous version. The latest version was tested successfully in various heat ranges inside the home and showed it could discern the hottest position, and moved there automatically.
While room heaters consume lot of power and remain static instead of warming the colder regions, Hagent is definitely a good alternative. Right now Hagent is operated by battery power but the designers are working on the next version which will replace the battery and make it work using the heat itself.
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