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UK consumer equipment maker Dyson is to start volume production of a new ventilator design to tackle the Coronavirus outbreak.
The CoVent battery-backed portable system was developed with consultancy The Technology Partnership (TTP) in Cambridge and the UK’s medical equipment regulator (MHRA), which should shorten the qualification process. The UK government has ordered 10,000 units, and Dyson will start making them at its site in Wiltshire, UK. It makes its consumer equipment at factories in Malaysia. The company will also donate 5000 units to international efforts.
The CoVent design (above) combines a re-designed digital motor from the vaccum cleaner designs and HEPA filters from the company’s air purifier, which means the components such as the fan units and filter systems are available in very high volume. It uses the fitlers to conserve oxygen using a rebreathe circuit, and the user interface has been designed to be simple to use by staff.
“We have refocused resources at Dyson, and worked with TTP, The Technology Partnership, to design and build an entirely new ventilator, The CoVent,” said James Dyson, founder of the company. “This new device can be manufactured quickly, efficiently and at volume. It is designed to address the specific clinical needs of Covid-19 patients, and it is suited to a variety of clinical settings. The core challenge was how to design and deliver a new, sophisticated medical product in volume and in an extremely short space of time. The race is now on to get it into production.”
“Ventilators are a regulated product so Dyson and TTP will be working with the MHRA and the Government to ensure that the product and the manufacturing process is approved. We have received an initial order of 10,000 units from the UK Government which we will supply on an open-book basis. We are also looking at ways of making it available internationally.”
“I am eager to see this new device in production and in hospitals as soon as possible. This is clearly a time of grave international crisis, I will therefore donate 5,000 units to the international effort, 1,000 of which will go to the United Kingdom,” he added.
The design is consistent with the UK government’s recent specification for a ventilator design that has been opened up to other suppliers.
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