Could ‘robotic ant’ solar tech put humans out of a job?
Osoji Solar seems to think so – the Chilean startup has created a fleet of robots to clean dust off solar panels.
It says the devices work together ‘like a colony of ants’ to solve the problem of reduced solar efficiency as a result of layers of dirt blocking sunlight.
The firm suggests most of the world’s ideal environments for solar generation are in places like deserts and are often accompanied by an extremely dusty environment – when dust settles on panels it can reduce efficiency by 50%
Its robots can clean without depleting valuable resources such as water and have been designed to function without human input, meaning people don’t need to work in hostile environments.