Sydney appliance manufacturing icon Zip Industries has launches a first-of-its kind contactless hot, cold and sparkling domestic and commercial water tap in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The company, which pioneered instant boiling water taps for homes and offices, has created the HydroTap Touch-Free Wave (pictured), a contactless version of its flagship HydroTap that will be launched in Australia and the United Kingdom in December and New Zealand in early 2021.
By adding four infrared sensors into the tap head of the HydroTap which has been widely adopted in homes and industry, the company fast-tracked development of a contactless solution that will help employers create Covid-safe workplaces.
To get the HydroTap Touch-Free Wave to market within six months, Zip Water Innovation Manager, Kevin Moult, said the company drew on industry-leading techniques to deliver a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) and prototype in record time.
Moult said: “By using advanced manufacturing techniques, including 3D printing and rapid prototyping, we were able to achieve our first viable prototype in half the usual time.
“The biggest challenge we faced was fitting four infrared sensors into the tap head, which only has a diameter of 4.5cm, so that they didn’t intersect and confuse commands.
“If you think about other contactless technology, like sensor-driven handwashing or toilet flushing systems, they only need to fit one or two sensors into a much, much bigger space, all directed in the same orientation.”
Zip ANZ Marketing and Strategy Director for Australia and New Zealand, Mike Abbott said the company had received inquiries for the new tap from domestic customers.
“We’ve also received enquiries from international customers for contactless HydroTaps for their offices located in countries including the United States, China, Singapore, Germany and Italy.
“We’re generating such significant early interest because workplaces worldwide need to show they can be Covid-safe and there’s nothing else like it on the market.”
Zip Water, founded in Sydney by industrialist Michael Crouch, is part of Culligan Water, the world leader in residential, office, commercial and industrial water treatment.
In 2019 it doubled the size of its its Condell Park, Sydney factory.
Pictures: Zip Water
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