Red hot robots take over Santander Banking Center in Spain
In Spain, Santander Banking Group’s new “El Faro” visitor’s center features sexy (albeit wheel shaped), Ferrari-red, knee-high assistant robots that are about as futuristic looking as today’s robots come. As visitors enter the building featuring walls paneled with hi-res LED columns and interactive surface design, they are greeted by SiGa robots, which stands for The Santander Interactive Guest Assistants and means “follow” in Spanish. The “robotic butlers” can process multiple languages, conversations, directions and take visitors wherever they need to go—while playing you ambient music.
“This is one of the first applications of swarm robotics in a commercial context,” says Luis Vargas, the industrial designer on the project. The autonomous bots, which look like light cycles from Tron as they move, use RF tags, gyroscopes, and odometers to situate and 16 sonar sensors to locate objects and sense their human guest while they move. They can run for 6 hours on their battery and know how to recharge themselves when drained.
Santander Group’s financial complex is located on the outskirts of Madrid. The visitor’s center, created by YDreams, is a 30 meter glass cube surrounding a plaza lined with trees covered in spiraling LED lights. The center is a creative blend of advanced technology and augmented reality offering visitors a taste of modern design while exploring the group’s history and global foothold.