“Petis”, an automatic handwashing device

Community service team, along with representatives of PD Pasar Surya. (Photo: Prive. Doc)

IO, Surabaya Maintaining hand hygiene is one of the efforts intended to reduce the spread of the Covid-19 virus. To make it easier for people to wash their hands, the High Voltage Laboratory, Department of Electrical Engineering, Sepuluh Nopember Institute of Technology (ITS), Surabaya, through a community service team created “Petis”, an automatic handwashing device.

Chairul Bahy, the coordinator of the community service team, said that “Petis” has been used in Wonokromo Market, Surabaya. This place was chosen because it is an important economic hub in supporting daily life in the community. A market is a public place that will continue to generate a lot of interaction among various groups of people.

Bahy (his nickname) explained that people in the market often express concern about contracting the SARS-CoV-2 virus when buying and selling. “However, anxiety is defeated by the urgency of life that must continue,” he said in a release received by the Independent Observer, Friday (29/1/2021).

Bahy continued to elaborate on how the community service team, consisting of 10 students, carried out socialization on the importance of maintaining hand hygiene and how to operate the tool. “We also conduct online consultations to maintain the equipment with the market manager,” he revealed.

The working technique of “Petis” is almost the same as current portable hand washers. However, there are several additional features, namely, an automatic sink, automatic soap, a thermo-gun connected to the speaker, and a water sensor detector. For technical use, the tool checks the user’s body temperature through a thermo-gun that is integrated with the sink. Furthermore, users can wash their hands with soap automatically without coming into contact with tools. This step aims to minimize touch, a factor that has an impact on the spread of the virus.

Bahy and the team brainstormed ideas with lecturers and laboratory assistants along with PD Pasar Surya partners while putting it together. For the manufacture of “Petis”, the team collaborated with various stakeholders, such as ITS alumni to manufacture thermo-gun sensors and sink makers.

The advantage offered by “Petis” is that it can check the body temperature of residents who are going to shop at the market, making it easier for officers to isolate those who are running a fever. “Officers can take action not to halt sick buyers from entering the market.”

Besides, the presence of an automatic soap and water tap is expected to reduce the necessity of touch. The last advantage is that there is a Water Detector Alarm, which will light up when the water in the storage is running low, so it can be filled immediately.

The implementation of this community service is expected to increase public awareness to comply with health protocols by maintaining distance, wearing masks, and diligently maintaining hand hygiene. “Petis is expected to help reduce the spread of the virus, especially in traditional markets, so that it can reduce the number of Covid-19 cases,” said Bahy. (est)