This story is part of AIN's continuing coverage of the impact of the coronavirus on aviation.
Engineers at Husky Corp., a manufacturer of fuel nozzles and accessories (including aviation fueling hoses), have come up with a rapid-manufacture ventilator design the company claims it could produce at a rate of 500 a week to aid in the nation’s shortage during the Covid-19 pandemic. Husky engineering manager Zach Holcomb and design engineer Derek Willers have produced a proof-of-concept ventilator comprising readily available parts or those that could be rapidly created through additive manufacturing, according to the Missouri-based company.
The design incorporates a standard 1,500-ml manual resuscitator bag and a rubber ram that compresses the bag by way of an air cylinder. Its ventilator also features programmable controls that adjust the flow rate of oxygen and the frequency of compressions.
Husky noted that the air cylinder is the same type it uses to test its fuel nozzles and other components that require several hundred thousand test cycles without failure. It also is exploring an electric version of the ventilator that wouldn’t require the air cylinder to make it usable in areas that don’t have access to compressed air, which hospital rooms do. Before making the ventilator available, Husky is seeking confirmation of its viability from a medical specialist such as a biomedical engineer, pulmonologist, or respiratory therapist.