Gecko Robotics Does The Heavy Inspecting At Power Plants To Prevent Human Fatalities

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Y Combinator-backed Gecko Robotics is hoping to save a few human lives at our nation’s power plants with wall-climbing robots.

Gecko’s proprietary magnetic adhesion technology works much like the sticky foot of a gecko, allowing its robots to crawl up walls to inspect for damage along the way.

A human would normally be the checker, but that presents an often dangerous situation. According to Gecko, most plants must shut down at least once a year to check for damage to the boiler. To do these inspections crews install 150-foot scaffolds and climb up the walls in search of areas in need of repair. On top of that, inspections can take up to seven days, with plants losing up to $1 million per day, says Gecko.

But for $50,000 to $100,000 Gecko deploys robots to do the work of human inspectors, saving time and money in the process.

The startup is currently working with several U.S. power plants and plans to be profitable by the end of the year. We spoke with co-founder Jake Loosararian about his wall-climbing robot inspectors. You can see that interview in the video above.

Note: The startup debuted its robotic technology at YC Demo Day 2016.