Highlights from the 2014 LA Auto Show

Cleaning

The Robo-Washer in action

Remember how much fun it was to use the Dyson Airblade the first time you saw one? The Robo-Washer steps up the game by doing the washing part for you as well. 360-degree jets of high pressure soapy water are followed by a blast of drying air to give you an all-in-one touchless hand cleaning station with no mess … Even if the prototype does look a bit like a doggy bowl on an apple crate.  Read More

The panels at the Ketura Sun solar plant in Israel are now cleaned autonomously by E4 robo...

The dusty desert environments where many solar plants are located can make their photovoltaic arrays dirty and reduce their effectiveness. Cleaning the panels can be a time-consuming and expensive process. An Israeli solar plant is now said to be the first to have fully-automated cleaning in place.  Read More

The PhoneSoap charger sanitizes your phone while charging it

It's no secret that mobile phones are breeding grounds for bacteria. They're touched regularly, spoken into and passed around, as well as being constantly switched on and, therefore, constantly warm. Indeed, a report by the UK's Which magazine suggested that mobile phones can carry up to eighteen times more bacteria than a men's toilet flush. The newly-launched PhoneSoap Charger uses UV light to sanitize your phone while it's charging.  Read More

The Leaktite Big Gripper is a new take on the humble bucket, with an ergonomic design maki...

The Leaktite Big Gripper from Home Depot attempts to rethink the bucket with an an asymmetric design that, when coupled with its ergonomic handle, makes it more balanced, even when full.  Read More

A couple of social trash box robots, on display in Tokyo at IREX 2013

Wouldn't it be great if we had robotic garbage cans that could move around on their own and pick up litter? Well, engineers from the Interaction and Communications Design Lab at Japan's Toyohashi University of Technology are part-way there. Their bots, however, ask people to pick up the trash for them.  Read More

Moneual's Rydis H67 robot vacuum and mop cleans hard floors and carpets

Sometimes, we just don't find the time we need to clean our homes. That's where cleaning robots can be a real life saver, as they do the cleaning for you. A new one from Moneual, called the Rydis H67, combines a vacuum for carpets and mop for tile and wood floors into one electronic workhorse.  Read More

The Immerse-A-Clean wand is said to be much more portable than existing 'bleach generators...

Janitors and other people who do large-scale cleaning certainly don't have an easy job. Among other things, they have to lug around heavy bottles of bleach or other cleansers, then risk the harmful effects of those products when using them. Texas-based GenEon Technologies, however, is now offering an alternative. The company's Immerse-A-Clean wand can reportedly turn regular tap water into an effective sanitizer, glass- and general-purpose cleaner, using nothing other than electricity and a non-toxic catalyst.  Read More

With the new Blizzident toothbrush (if it can be called a toothbrush), a full and complete...

When it comes to things that people don't do as often or as well as they should, tooth-brushing would have to be at the top of the list. While it usually just comes down to laziness, a lot of people claim that they don't brush their teeth properly because they don't have time. Well, with the new Blizzident toothbrush (if it can be called a toothbrush), a full and complete cleaning of the teeth can reportedly be accomplished in just six seconds.  Read More

An unlikely tool for sewage treatment (Photo: Stuart Pilbrow)

A team of Taiwanese researchers is to demonstrate a method of treating sewage using old optical disks such as CDs. The disks are used as a platform to grow minuscule nanorods of zinc oxide, a known photocatalyst capable of breaking down organic matter. By spinning the disks, sewage water spreads into a thin layer through which light can pass, exciting the nanorods into action.  Read More

The Glovebucket – unfortunately, it's too small to hold a baby with soiled diapers

From time to time, just about everyone has to perform messy jobs such as cleaning paintbrushes, scrubbing greasy vehicle parts with solvent, or removing dried-on mud from footwear. Usually, you have to change into old clothes in order to so, and even then you'll still get some "overspray" on your face and arms. With the Glovebucket, however, you can do those jobs while wearing a tux.  Read More

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