MIT new open-source project can offer low-cost respirator for hospitals


Adding to the lack of space and healthcare personnel in the shortage of materials such as masks, protective gloves, and respirators. COVID-19 is pushing the resources and forces of the health system of the affected countries to the limit. However, contributors from MIT are seeking to help curb these issues.

Governments and private companies are struggling to find the materials that doctors and nurses require to take care of the thousands of infected people in the affected countries. Hence projects like this one from MIT could help them contribute to this crisis.

The main symptoms of COVID-19 are related to respiratory difficulties, making hospital respirators essential to help the sick. Fortunately, scientific institutions like MIT have spent years working to make easier-to-build respirators. Whose design would speed the arrival of this material in hospitals.


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The open-source project, carried out by a group of students from the Precision Machine Design course, started years ago as a necessary measure for rural areas in developing countries. In these areas, respiratory problems are frequent, and mechanical respirators are scarce to treat patients. Hence the need to find a simpler and faster design to manufacture is low-cost.

The students knew that an idea like this could also be useful in countries like the United States. In the face of a health crisis like the one that is being experienced now. This model would cost $100 to manufacture. Compared to the thousands, it costs to produce the standard models found in hospitals. That are currently out of stock in many places.

The team of researchers published an article about its low-cost design but never made progress with the production of this type of respirator. This would be the step that needs to be taken now and in a short time. The device would have a motor that automatically compresses the valve and the mask. Some components are very similar to those used by emergency teams in ambulances to help the patient breathe.

Every day that passes, new cases of volunteers with 3D printers are getting in part. That are helping to manufacture respirators and send them to hospitals as soon as possible. In addition, MIT warns that this type of device should only be used by qualified personnel and with specialized medical studies in these diseases.

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