T-Works, A Government of Telangana initiative, in collaboration with the Hyderabad ecosystem of startups and corporations, has developed a BVM based affordable ventilator for emergency use. This meets the specifications as identified by the various doctors treating the COVID-19 patients and has incorporated the specifications laid out by the University of Florida, NXP and MIT. The ventilator was demonstrated today to Minister for IT, Shri KT Rama Rao. The minister appreciated the effort of the team and congratulated them for building a sophisticated machine in a short timeline. He also stressed on the importance of rapidly going through the required testing and certification processes in order to be ready for manufacturing. He said the state will explore the possibility of procuring the said ventilators as part of the ongoing measures to contain and treat COVID-19.
A team of 20 coming from various engineering domains, including T-Works members, startups, product designers and engineers, Qualcomm and Honeywell members, developed this product in 31 days, working through the lockdown period taking only one Sunday off. The T-Works Phase 0 premises at Begumpet, with 3D printers, laser cutter and other prototyping tools, became a hub of activity where all these engineers collaborated.
The mantra of T-Works is ‘Collaborate. Collaborate. Collaborate’ became the underlying philosophy where companies and startups and engineers worked towards a common interest. Continuous inputs and feedback were taken from senior doctors at NIMS, Apollo Hospital, Sunshine Hospital and Prathima Hospital. IIIT Hyderabad helped with the manufacturing of some parts on their 3D printers. Mouser and GE Healthcare collaborated. Companies of Hyderabad who collaborated include Spectrochem Instruments, Althion, Trishula, Entesla, Conservation, and Signum Techniks. The mission is to develop a medical-grade product that meets the requirements of doctors and hospitals treating COVID-19 patients or any ARDS patients. The product price is well under Rs.1 lakh and can be used in pandemic situations, and also in hospitals in districts and mandals including smaller hospitals in the city.
This device shall be used as an emergency use ventilator to fulfill unmet demand during times of crisis.
The device uses most commonly available mechanical and electronic parts, using microcontroller boards, pressure sensors, valves, and easily fabricated mechanical parts and motors. Multiple fabrication options with local manufacturers is possible with shorter lead time in procurement and faster and easier assembly.
The device uses a bag valve mask or BVM, popularly known as an Ambu bag, and tracks vital parameters such as tidal volume, airflow, peak pressure, and oxygen concentration.
An aluminum frame provides strength and protection from rough handling for the various components housed inside. The labeling on the device is bi-lingual to aid health workers who may be unfamiliar with English. While ICUs generally have a high-pressure piped oxygen supply, emergency field hospitals and rural healthcare centres might not be as equipped. Hence, a provision for cylinder-based oxygen supply has been incorporated into the design.