IISc Team Building Indigenous Ventilator Prototype For COVID-19 Patients
Patients with severe COVID-19 infection have inflamed or damaged lungs that struggle to receive sufficient oxygen.
To address the shortage of ventilators in the country, a team of engineers at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) Bangalore is currently building a prototype of an electro-mechanical ventilator from scratch, using only components found or made in India, based on guidelines issued by the UK Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency.
It is expected to be ready within the next couple of weeks, a statement from the Institute said.
"A ventilator can be a life-saver for patients whose lungs are damaged by the COVID-19 infection. But India, like all countries grappling with this pandemic, is likely to face a large shortage of ventilators. Manufacturers are unable to source key components such as sensors and flow controllers from abroad due to the current disruptions in global supply chains," the statement said.
Patients with severe COVID-19 infection have inflamed or damaged lungs that struggle to receive sufficient oxygen. When doctors put them on a ventilator, the machine critically assists lung function, feeding the patients a controlled mixture of air and oxygen and buying their body time to fight the infection.
"We are building it so that anyone can use it free of cost," says TV Prabhakar, Principal Research Scientist at the Department of Electronic Systems Engineering (DESE) and one of the founders of the project.
"For the last 10 days, we have been working day and night to get this technology going," says Gaurab Banerjee, Associate Professor at the Department of Electrical Communication Engineering and one of the project coordinators.
"We hope that by the end of April, manufacturers can have their own prototypes done, which they can scale up very quickly," Mr Banerjee adds.
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