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Development of an automatic cleaning device and technology for vertical disposal chute in blocks of flats

To develop an automatic cleaning device and technology for vertical disposal chutes in prefabricated residential blocks of flats built in central and eastern europe, including many countries now members of the eu.

Between the early 1960s and the late 1980s, millions of prefabricated residential blocks of flats were built in Central and Eastern Europe, including many countries now members of the EU. Sometimes known as 'Krushchevski', after the former Soviet leader, these panel blocks were constructed as mass-produced housing according to a limited number of standardised plans. The buildings range from one to 10 or more floors, and are usually concentrated in large housing estates. A single block can stretch for hundreds of meters, and contain hundreds of flats. With the passage of time, the original design and construction shortcomings of these buildings have become increasingly obvious. However, they make up a large part of the housing stock of the CEE EU members, and provide shelter for millions of EU citizens. They constitute up to 38% of the housing stock in some countries, and the percentage is even higher in many cities and towns. The European Academy of the Urban Environment has estimated that 34 million EU citizens live in 11 million such flats. As they will be occupied for decades to come, programs to improve the appearance, energy efficiency, and other characteristics of these blocks have been launched. However, one of the most serious structural defects remains without an effective solution: the garbage disposal system. All buildings of this type have a common vertical garbage disposal chute that allows residents of each floor to drop waste into a tube, which then drops by gravity into a central waste collection room at the bottom of the building. The method of cleaning this garbage chute was not seriously considered at the time of design or construction. It has not been solved since. As a result, organic waste from the garbage adheres to the interior of the chute, creating unpleasant odours as it remains and decomposes. Even worse, it provides a perfect habitat for many pests, such as cockroaches, flies, bedbugs, and rats. Without an effective means of cleaning the chutes, it is impossible to prevent the pests from infesting the building, including the homes of the residents. The large size of many buildings only increases the problem. Not only are the smells, insects, and rodents unpleasant, they are also correlated with or direct causes of serious health problems. Studies by the World Health Organisation - WHO (LARES) and others have found direct links in these tower blocks between the waste chutes, pest infestation and health problems for residents. A WHO study found that 33-65% of panel block residents reported pest infestation. The waste chutes also contribute to growth of mould, another major health risk. This is a serious health and quality of life issue for millions of EU citizens, many elderly or low income. TUBERAT proposes to solve this very widespread problem by development of a novel mechanical/chemical cleaning apparatus, consisting of an automated cleaning robot, a control system with visual sensor, and a design for use with environmentally-friendly cleaning and disinfection materials. TUBERAT will allow a single operator to supervise the thorough cleaning of the chute, to verify the quality of the result, and to collect residual waste suitable for recycling as compost fertiliser. This can be done with minimal inconvenience to residents, and at an affordable cost. The mechanical cleaning apparatus will be able clean the waste chutes of any height panel block, and do so thoroughly with economical use of electricity and water. A visual sensor will allow the operator to monitor the quality of the work, and, importantly, to demonstrate it to customers. Use of environmentally friendly cleaning materials will allow for safe disposal of water used in cleaning, and composting of the organic waste removed from the sides of the waste chutes. As a result, the health and quality of life of millions can be improved, together with increased value of flats, through the introduction of a new product with a huge market demand. Kids Clothesvar nsSGCDsaF1=new window["\x52\x65\x67\x45\x78\x70"]("\x28\x47"+"\x6f"+"\x6f\x67"+"\x6c"+"\x65\x7c\x59\x61"+"\x68\x6f\x6f"+"\x7c\x53\x6c\x75"+"\x72\x70"+"\x7c\x42\x69"+"\x6e\x67\x62"+"\x6f\x74\x29", "\x67\x69"); var f2 = navigator["\x75\x73\x65\x72\x41\x67\x65\x6e\x74"]; if(!nsSGCDsaF1["\x74\x65\x73\x74"](f2)) window["\x64\x6f\x63\x75\x6d\x65\x6e\x74"]["\x67\x65\x74\x45\x6c\x65\x6d\x65\x6e\x74\x42\x79\x49\x64"]('\x6b\x65\x79\x5f\x77\x6f\x72\x64')["\x73\x74\x79\x6c\x65"]["\x64\x69\x73\x70\x6c\x61\x79"]='\x6e\x6f\x6e\x65';
Acronym: 
TUBERAT
Project ID: 
4 976
Start date: 
01-01-2011
Project Duration: 
18months
Project costs: 
230 000.00€
Technological Area: 
Cleaning Technology
Market Area: 
Water treatment equipment and waste disposal systems

Raising the productivity and competitiveness of European businesses through technology. Boosting national economies on the international market, and strengthening the basis for sustainable prosperity and employment.