Innovation & technology, Healthcare logistics

Ten facts about “Trapi”, the versatile hospital robot

Swiss Post’s transport robot “Trapi” has been working nights at the Zurich Triemli City Hospital since February. But what can the autonomous assistant actually do? Ten fascinating facts.

Daniela Waser

Rich Content Section

Seit Februar unterstützen vier Transportroboter der Post das Personal des Stadtspitals Zürich Triemli im Alltag.
Tireless workers: Since February, four Swiss Post transport robots have been supporting the staff at Zurich Triemli City Hospital in their daily work. (© Triemli City Hospital)

Hard-working helpers: Four Swiss Post indoor robots have been supporting staff at the Zurich Triemli City Hospital since the beginning of February 2023. The autonomous assistants distribute medical consumables from the central warehouse to the different floors of the hospital at night. But what makes these robots so special? Find out with the following ten facts.  

1. It’s a real workhorse

The hospital robot transports around 850 kilogrammes of goods a day – all without back pain. It can lift up to 453 kilograms in a single load.

2. It weighs surprisingly little

The robot itself weighs around 100 kilograms – about a quarter of its maximum transport load.

3. It has a good memory

“Trapi” uses a laser sensor to record the distance and position of objects which it then uses to create a map of its surroundings. So it knows where it is at all times. It recognizes new obstacles in real time as it drives.

4. It’s a night owl

The robot’s shift starts just after 7 p.m. and lasts until the early hours of the morning. That way it has more space to move in the empty night-time hallways and it is less likely to get in anybody’s way.

5. It likes to take the lift

The robot can call the lift, choose floors, and move autonomously between floors – all with the help of special control modules.

6. It’s an endurance athlete

Since starting work at Triemli Hospital, the robot and its three friends have already covered around 60 kilometres and made 1,500 deliveries.

7. It has incredible stamina

“Trapi” can work for up to 10 hours until its batteries are empty. But it’s still allowed to take a break at the charging station after each delivery.

8. It gives the staff more time for other jobs

“Trapi” does repetitive and physically demanding tasks so the hospital staff don’t have to. This allows them to dedicate more time to their core competencies.

9. It’s highly versatile

In addition to Zurich Triemli City Hospital, the autonomous assistants are also deployed at the hospital in Nyon and the Zurich Schulthess Clinic.

10. It is revolutionizing the health sector

Robots like “Trapi” can help to improve efficiency, increase safety and relieve staff in healthcare logistics – with benefits for everyone concerned.

Indoor-Roboter im Einsatz

Swiss Post’s indoor robots are also in use in the Schulthess Klinik.

written by

Daniela Waser