As the Penguins prepare to increase capacity to 50 percent for Game 2 on Tuesday, May 17, those entering the building can rest assured knowing that the team has partnered with Carnegie Robotics to bring autonomous UV floor scrubbers to the concourses at PPG Paints Arena.
"We are proud to partner with technology companies like Carnegie Robotics, who are leading the new economy in Pittsburgh," said David Morehouse, president and CEO of the Penguins. "It's also a perfect opportunity for us to help them showcase their robotics technology at PPG Paints Arena as we increase fan capacity during the Stanley Cup playoffs."
It's about a 10-minute drive from PPG Paints Arena to Carnegie Robotics, which was founded in Pittsburgh in 2010 and moved to a permanent home in Lawrenceville a few years back, renovating one of the oldest remaining steel buildings in the area.
They are a premiere robotics and AI company who has been a standard bearer in the industry for years, chosen by the U.S. Army to develop mine-hunting sensor payloads for ground robots and working with Uber on self-driving cars. For Carnegie Robotics, it was a no-brainer to team up with an organization like the Penguins.
"The Penguins are one of the premiere sports teams in the world," said Mike Embrescia, Chief Development Officer for Carnegie Robotics. "To put two of the best in their respective industries together is a win. We're in the business of continuing to open the world's eyes to Pittsburgh and to our cutting-edge technology, robotics and AI. What better way to do that than via a partnership with the best?"
Carnegie Robotics is a local company with a global reputation. The name Carnegie is so profound and has such pull, but at the same time, as Embrescia put it - "it couldn't be more Pittsburgh."
Carnegie Robotics takes pride in their Pittsburgh roots, and are committed to the region. They know the Penguins are the same, which is another reason why Carnegie Robotics is so excited about having their autonomous UV floor scrubbers in PPG Paints Arena.
There are over a thousand of these machines across the world. But it means a lot to Carnegie Robotics that their cleaning technology, which was invented right here in Pittsburgh, can help keep Penguins fans safe and secure.
"There's just some level of pride that this is in our backyard," Embrescia said. "This is absolutely genuine. This is something that is so important to my team. With these, it's not about sales. It's just about having a presence."
"Everything that goes on within those concourses and in those halls has everything to do with pride. That's all that it is, and that's why we're there."
The autonomous UV floor scrubbers, which are essentially self-cleaning robots, will help keep PPG Paints Arena safe and sanitized 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
"It's really neat what the machines can do," Embrescia said. "The fact that it's always cleaning and it has a UV deck is so important in a COVID world, as you want to be able to kill whatever bacteria or germs are out there. It's also important to have it going on continuously. It can run all day and all night."
The Penguins made a myriad of improvements over the past year to create the safest environment possible at PPG Paints Arena. They are committed to carrying over their initiatives and policies into a post-COVID world with assistance from the team at Carnegie Robotics, who are looking forward to seeing how their partnership with the Penguins continues to grow into the future.
"We're just scratching the surface with how we can apply robotic technologies to cleaning and disinfection," Embrescia said. "We are at the forefront, with those machines being just the first step."