It would not be wrong to say that the spirit of entrepreneurship has spread all over Turkey. With each passing day, we can see that smart ideas from different provinces in our country are being turned into promising projects with advanced technology and therefore contributing to both the economy and society. One such idea recently emerged from Kocaeli. The project, created by two engineering graduates from Gebze Technical University, became Turkey‘s first level five fully autonomous, sea-cleanup device.
Furkan Mutlu and Mustafa Erol‘s venture to produce autonomous sea-cleaning robots made it to the finals at the Global Cleantech Innovation Program (GCIP) – Turkey contest in 2016. After receiving a grant from Turkey’s Scientific and Technological Research Council (TÜBİTAK) under its 1512 techno-enterprise capital assistance program and training from GCIP mentors, the duo founded their own company IWROBOT X in Gebze in 2018. The company currently consists of four people producing projects that combine autonomous and AI technologies.
Mustafa Erol, general manager of IWROBOTX, said in describing their robots, “ODTA (Autonomous Marine Cleaning Vehicle) recognizes, collects, categorizes waste on the sea surface with AI and image processing technology area by area, sending this information online to later be presented as a report.”
“ODTA’s software and hardware were created after six years of research and development (R&D). Test processes are underway in Yalova. We are planning to export the ground station we have developed for ODTA. In this context, our first product has been completed for our ground station which has a range of 50 kilometers,” he said.
Stating that they are aiming to start exporting their product after completing ODTA‘s pilot process in Turkey, Erol said: “Our talks with France, Greece, Russia and the Kingdom of Tonga (in Oceania) have begun. We are working with Middle Eastern Technical University’s (METU) Institute of Water Sciences to launch ODTA’s pilot process at the Mersin Metropolitan Municipality this summer,” he added.