What happened to the "Rumba"? ――The secret of 5 times the suction power and 50% improvement in cleaning performance: Katsunori Takita's "White goods, amazing technology" (page 1/3)

"Rumba 800 series" announced on February 18th. The top model for the first time in three years has undergone a major evolution by remaking the suction system, which can be said to be the life of a vacuum cleaner, with a completely new approach. Why did iRobot make such a bold decision when it created and still reigns supreme in the robot vacuum market? I hit Jerry Caron of iRobot, one of the central figures in Roomba development.

iRobot's Jerry Caron

Caron started by talking about iRobot's R&D. “At iRobot, we have engineers who can create world-class robot systems. As you can see when you come to the office, many engineers are divided into several groups and are making various robots. What we are paying attention to is a robot called a manipulator, a robot that moves like a finger operation.You can pick up coins, twist a doorknob to open a door, etc. On the other hand, the Roomba is the opposite of that. We are simply pursuing how to clean the floor.”

Then, in such an environment, how was the new suction mechanism "AeroForce Cleaning System" born?

What happened to 'Rumba' of? --The secret of 5 times the suction power and 50% improvement in cleaning performance: Katsunori Takita's

One day, the engineer who is the leader of the team came up with an unexpected way to remove the dust on the floor. It was the base technology, but when we actually verified the effect, we found that it was a truly innovative method because it showed a surprising number of cleaning performance. After 7 years of work, it's finally completed."

Looking at the back of the Roomba 800 series, instead of a brush, there is a roller called an "AeroForce extractor". According to Caron, this is the "most innovative part" of the AeroForce cleaning system.

Roller "AeroForce extractor" for scraping dust into the main body. Each of them hits the floor to float the dust, rotates from the outside to the inside, and picks up the dust. If you don't remove them properly, the cleaning ability will gradually decrease.However, removing these by hand was a very time-consuming task.This "AeroForce Extractor" is made of a special rubber By carving grooves called fledges into the material, and by adding dashed or solid line-like protrusions instead of hairs, long hairs and the like do not get tangled at all.”

In addition, it is said that the unevenness of the surface and the flexible material have their own meanings.

"The height of the convex part is different. Some are low, some are connected and some are broken lines, but they are V-shaped around the center. Dozens of these patterns After repeated trial and error and verification, we arrived at this shape.On the other hand, we also tried various materials.This roller has some elasticity, but it is the opposite. However, thanks to this, it is possible to "grab and pull out" large debris firmly with two rollers while scrubbing the floor surface by rotating. Also, the reason why this V shape is adopted is that when dust gets caught on the edge, it gathers in the center as it rotates, and is finally sucked inward. ”.

Improvements on the surface and flexible materials are also significant

Another factor that was optimized was the distance between the rolls. “In fact, compared to the 700 series brushes, the two rollers are lined up at a much smaller distance. Also, the narrower suction port accelerates the air more when you suck it in. When you hold it down, it speeds up the inflow of air so that the momentum of the water increases all at once.”

However, it is hard to imagine that the cleaning ability will increase by 150% just by changing the rotating brush. There should be some more advanced parts.

The motor is also improved, and the dust box is enlarged 1|2|3 To the next page