COVID ROBOT pixWaukegan aerospace company Astronics Corporation is building coronavirus-killing robots, called the Xenex LightStrike, to help hospitals and health care facilities protect patients and staff from the spread of the virus.

The device is being used by seven Chicago hospitals and 700 facilities worldwide, including in Florida, California and North Carolina.

The robot uses pulsed UV rays to penetrate the virus’ cell walls and destroy the molecular structure, killing the virus. A single robot allows hospitals to disinfect 60 or more rooms, destroying bacteria that can’t be reached through typical cleaning and uses no chemicals or toxic fumes.

According to Astronics Corporation, the LightStrike’s pulsed xenon, full-spectrum, ultraviolet rays achieved a 99.99% level of disinfection against the coronavirus within just two minutes.

“This technology is important today because these are the most powerful UV robots that have ever been made. They're 4,000 times more intense than any other UV robot that has ever been on the market. As a result of that, they're extremely fast,” Xenex CEO Morris Miller said.

The Waukegan facility has approximately 300 employees who all work to build the robots.