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Collaboratively repurposing e-waste

“More than 20 million tons of e-waste are produced every year” ( Our leading recycling facilities are focused on extracting valuable materials (such as gold or silver) using industrial methods while destroying other reusable resources or working components in the process. Intended for future electronic waste repair and recycling facilities, Revive is a collaborative robotic system that works alongside human companions to improve efficiency, 

create safer working conditions, understand human judgement and extract reusable material unlike before.

This project was completed in collaboration between ABB Robotics (Sweden) and Umea Institute of Design (Sweden) over a 10 week period. Research and synthesis was undertaken between 10 designers, before Franzi Heuck and I teamed up to further investigate, ideate, and prototype Revive.  


Parts fit together to create

an ‘assembled’ feeling

Form Factor

Soft shapes are contrasted against sharp cutouts to create a sense of kindness, agility and performance


Small and compact size is approachable

Drill Bits

Interchangeable drill bits are automatically switched to suit job

Vacuum Pad

For lifting, stabilising and sorting components


Revive detects and analyses components while recognising position of worker

Revive Scanning Phone
Revive Interaction areas
Revive Access Info

1. Recognition

Access data surrounding ewaste product value, common faults and assembly.

2. Communication

Tasks are shared and decisions made by placing components in each others workspaces.

3. Information

Connect components to potential reuse cases and determine disassembly.

“Between 20% and 30% of the material content of a phone is lost when the phone is shredded and melted down for recycling”.

Current Recycling + Repair Facilities

Assessment & repair rely on human judgement

Arrow infographic

Large variety of products dismantled

post it note brainstorm
E-waste dismantling trial
Revive roleplaying scenario
Revive 1:1 scale trial
Revive Mockup
Revive interaction development
Revive concept development
Revive concept render
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