Solid Waste & Recycling


Trash can takes itself to the curb

The SmartCan will return to its starting place after being emptied.

MINNEAPOLIS – Smart home company Rezzi has been selected as the latest Cool Idea Award winner for innovation in automated consumer electronics technology.

The award is presented by digital manufacturing specialist Protolabs. Each year, the program awards an aggregate of up to $250,000 in Protolabs manufacturing services.

Rezzi’s SmartCan eliminates the need for homeowners to drag their garbage cans to the curb by providing a motorized trash can attachment and corresponding mobile app. Users can set the specific day and time they need their trash to be at the curb for pickup, and the SmartCan attachment will get it there autonomously.

Once picked up by collectors, the SmartCan heads back to its base after sensing the vertical movement.

“We want to help people eliminate unnecessary chores from their daily lives,” said Rezzi CEO and SmartCan creator Andrew Murray.

“We see an opportunity to take IoT beyond just turning off lights or turning on music, and really help alleviate the burden of the mundane physical tasks that everyone faces. Rezzi is looking to build on the progress of notable smart home and IoT companies to do our part in redefining this consumer landscape.”

Rezzi plans to bring SmartCan to market by late 2020, and with the help of Protolabs and the Cool Idea Award, the company has been able to rapidly accelerate its current phase of product prototyping and testing, bumping up its production schedule by nearly six months.

SmartCan’s entire mechanical structure was manufactured by Protolabs, including the main body fabricated from sheet metal, the drive train assembly and the 3D printed plastic cover.

“Much like what autonomous robotic vacuum cleaners have done for keeping a clean home and what smart doorbells have done for home security, SmartCan completes the recurring task of taking out the garbage,” said Vicki Holt, president and CEO of Protolabs.

“We’re seeing more and more autonomous products in the consumer electronics industry, aimed at reducing time spent doing less desirable things and enabling more time for valued activities.”

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