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New Pipetting Robot Automates COVID-19 Testing Processes to Reduce Repetitive Work and Accidents

By LabMedica International staff writers
Posted on 24 Jun 2020
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Image: Flowbot ONE (Photo courtesy of Flow Robotics)
Image: Flowbot ONE (Photo courtesy of Flow Robotics)
A new pipetting robot is automating COVID-19 testing processes in European hospitals, thereby significantly reducing the time taken by laboratories to generate results.

The liquid handling robot named flowbot ONE developed by Flow Robotics (Copenhagen, Denmark) makes automating pipetting simple with an intuitive user interface that can be mastered in just one hour. The company has termed flowbot ONE as a liquid handling cobot as it collaborates with the user in the lab, assisting in workflows and adapting to the lab. It does not require programming, extensive training, or a long implementation period. With flowbot ONE, these steps can be skipped and automation can be started immediately. The highly precise system ensures accurate and consistent pipetting and results, saving time as well as increasing safety by minimizing manual handling of pathogenic strains.

A plug and play solution with high accuracy and precision, flowbot ONE allows the user to customize components and liquid classes easily, edit, copy and share existing programs. It offers a range of functions to ease the workflow such as two pipette modules (choice between 1, 4 and 8-channel), volume ranges of 1-20μL, 2-200μL and 10-1000μL, 12 capacity positions (SBS format), and automatic liquid level detection. flowbot ONE has taken over the massive workload of COVID-19 sample preparation in hospitals across Europe.

“Our stress levels have decreased in many ways: less repetitive work, and fewer potential errors. While the robot is pipetting, we can perform other tasks, accelerating the speed of the COVID-19 tests we are performing,” said Martin Friis, a molecular biologist at Herlev Hospital.

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