Saturday, May 23, 2020

The GMIT-designed emergency ventilator prototype which was created in conjunction with Ballina firm, Collins Plastics.

The Ballina-based company, Collins Plastics, has worked with staff from GMIT School of Engineering to develop a low-cost emergency ventilator prototype.
The GMIT team is one of numerous ones around the country working to find fast and inexpensive solutions to the global demand for devices to assist the medical profession in treating Covid-19.
With experts claiming several waves of the Covid-19 pandemic are likely, the demand for ventilators is set to continue to increase.
The GMIT prototype allows for the automated squeezing of a manual bag-valve-mask resuscitator to act as a rudimentary ventilator.
The materials used mean the device can be built anywhere or by anyone as a last resort.
The device will be automated and controlled in such a way as to allow for interaction with both the physician and patient for assisted breathing.
Several units of the prototype will now be manufactured for demonstration and calibration purposes pending regulatory and governmental approval.
The project is led by Mr James Boyle, Head of the Advanced Craft Certificate Programme for Electrical Installation, GMIT and Dr Oliver Mulryan, GMIT and the team includes Pat Cassidy from the Dept of Electronic and Electrical Engineering; David McDonnell and Dr Alan Hannon from the Dept of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering and Liam Collins and Kate Thompson from Collins Plastics who provided their time and expertise as well as materials and machining.
Gerard MacMichael, Head of the GMIT School of Engineering, said: “Putting a team together to design and manufacture a ventilator within weeks would be a challenge in the best of times, but to achieve this during the Covid-19 containment is extraordinary. It’s a reflection of the GMIT engineering staff’s dedication and enthusiasm and of Collins Plastics’ commitment.”

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