Ghanaian excellence - 3 young women at KNUST build mosquito repellent robot

Ghanaian excellence - 3 young women at KNUST build mosquito repellent robot

A team of second-year students from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science Technology (KNUST) has constructed a robot that is expected to do the job of a mosquito repellent.

A team of three young women offering Biomedical Engineering at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) have built a mosquito repellent that is a robot.

The innovation, which is the first of its kind in Ghana, is a convergence of technology and medicine. It may be the future that all of us are waking up to.

The second-year students, Joana Owusu-Appiah, Selinam Fiadjo and Daniella Asare call the robot ‘Antiquito’, coined from ‘anti’ and ‘mosquito’.

Each year, countries around the world, Africa specifically, spend huge sums of money on mosquito control programmes and mosquito bite treatment.

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KNUST robot for mosquitoes
From left to right: Joana Owusu-Appiah, Selinam Fiadjo and Daniella Asare. Photo credit:
Source: UGC

The hope is that innovations like Antiquito will make both financial and innovative sense in the fight against malaria.

The girls were quoted as saying: “We realise there are so many measures to kill mosquitoes but we thought to ourselves, is it a problem of mosquitoes living or the fact that they’re in our space?

“Somebody is his room with mosquito coil and net but when there is light out, he goes out for fresh air and gets bitten.”

They then asked themselves: “What can we do for people who are outside their rooms and getting fresh air?"

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The robot, built with computer programming, emits ultrasonic sounds. Ultrasound is not different from "normal" sound in its physical properties, except that humans cannot hear it.

This limit varies from person to person and is approximately 20 kilohertz in healthy young adults.

Ultrasound is used in many different fields, including detecting objects and measuring distance. Animals such as bats use ultrasound for locating prey and obstacles.

The students are working to create miniature of the machine and employ artificial intelligence to make it smarter.

Hopefully, this will spell the opening up of new dawn for Ghanaian science and technology.

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