by Jan Buytaert (CERN)

13/2-005 (CERN)



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In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, a project was initiated to design and construct a novel streamlined ventilator, called High Energy Ventilator (HEV), led by a team at CERN and in collaborating institutes. As the pandemic spread, the number of hospitalised patients requiring ventilators led to a global shortage of supplies. The team realised that the types of systems used to regulate gas flows for particle physics detectors could be used to design a novel ventilator. The HEV design could be used for patients in mild or recovery phases, enabling the more high-end machines to be freed up for the most intensive cases. It is a safety-first design, intended to satisfy clinical requirements for the most requested ventilation modes for COVID-19 patients.

The first stage of prototyping was achieved at CERN on 27 March, with a concept that relies on inexpensive and readily available components. The desired physical characteristics of the pressure regulators, valves and pressure sensors are now being refined, and the support of clinicians and international organisations was harnessed for further testing within hospital settings. The control software for this device is encapsulated in a dedicated microcontroller that will, along with other low-power components, enable the deployment of the HEV in areas with limited resources and unstable power distribution, making possible to power it with batteries, solar panels or emergency power generators.

This seminar will describe the concept, technical design and tests of the HEV system.