VentAID

A self-contained respirator to help during the COVID-19 pandemic

CLIENT

ventAID

STUDIO

Mexico

SERVICES

Product & Service Design
Engineering

The Challenge

In March 2020, the world was hit by the most severe pandemic of the 21st century. The speed of transmission and the severity of symptoms was something most of the health systems in the world were not ready for. Assisted respirators were scarce, and the situation could get worse. The United States Center for Disease Control expected the country to have a ventilator shortage on the order of 300,000 to 700,000 units.

The Opportunity

Our ambition was not to create an expensive, hard-to-build respirator. We needed something that could be manufactured quickly, easily, and most importantly, at a low-cost. And we wanted to make it available for anyone to download and build for free.

The Solution

The ventAID respirator is a customizable low-cost machine capable of turning manual bag valves into autonomous respirators.

Made of steel, manufactured through laser cutting and mechanical bends and assembled with screws for durability, we kept the size as small as possible to ensure it would be easily transported from room to room and easy to clean and disinfect.

Our Approach

LEARNING FROM OTHERS

We knew we had to take into consideration what others were doing around the world, from MIT to SpaceX, so we looked into their approaches and worked on a solution that could be built outside of an industrial environment by anyone with a “couple” of tools.

FAST, IF NOT FASTER

Throughout the process, we learned from doctors, engineers, and other experts to develop functional prototypes, test them against the highest standards, and iterated until we had a final version that could meet the specifications of the U.S. Department of Defense in their Hack-A-Vent Innovation Challenge. In two weeks, we had our first fully-functional prototype.

OPEN SOURCE

We currently have a 100% functional prototype available for download. The source code, plans, and list of materials can be accessed here so anyone around the world can take them and create their own. We continue working to improve the first versions and we will publish our progress.

We are inviting the world to hack us. Take these blueprints, make them yours, and build a respirator. A better one. A more efficient one. As COVID-19 keeps hitting hard in some parts of the world, there might still be a need in your country.

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