Maja Åstrand

Maja Åstrand holds a BSc in Vehicle Engineering from KTH and is currently pursuing an MSc in Robotics at KTH. Alongside her studies, she has been running SimulAir and working as an Automation Engineer at B&R Industrial Automation, a division of ABB Robotics. The inception of SimulAir followed a bed bug infestation in her student apartment. After meeting her co-founder Simon, they developed their first prototype as part of their bachelor thesis, which was featured in an article by BBC Future.

SimulAir has developed a machine that attracts, captures, and identifies bed bugs. Traditionally, during treatment, a human is required to act as bait to lure bed bugs out from their hiding spots and into contact with pesticides. Their machine, when placed in a room, simulates human presence so no person needs to act as a bait. Once the bed bugs are attracted, they are captured in the trap. Currently, they are primarily working with pest control companies and commercial property owners. They have built and tested five prototypes, which have been verified both in the field with customers and in lab tests with a bed bug researcher.