Open Source Ventilator Project

The University of Florida Health Open Source Ventilator (Photo: University of Florida)

The Center for Safety, Simulation and Advanced Learning Technologies at the University of Florida Health has developed open-source, open architecture ventilator engineering design specifications to address a predicted ventilator shortage worldwide due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It will also host open source contributions.

The above link directs people to a website that provides sufficient information to construct such a ventilator, although attention is also focused on the disclaimer at the bottom of the page.

Other news sources have also provided more readable information on the project.

It is claimed that hardware for the project is readily available at hardware stores. Parts were purchased at Home Depot. There are claims that the ventilator can be produced with $300 in parts, in addition to labour. I note that the controller is an Arduino based unit. The Arduino is a very simple controller board, that I have used in my teaching from 2008 – 2016.

If you (or someone you know) would like to work on this or similar health projects, please contact me at:

MIT Emergency Ventilator Project

E-Vent, a team of volunteers, scientists, physicians and computer scientists at MIT revived a 10-year-old ventilator project. The result is an affordable and easily replicable, but primitive, ventilator design. The total parts cost is $400 to $500, . The E-Vent team plans to share their design online on their website so that manufacturers and companies can recreate the lifesaving device for hospitals around the world.

The device’s main part already exists in most American hospital inventories: an Ambu resuscitation bag. Usually, these are manually operated by emergency technicians or medical professionals to keep a patient breathing until they are hooked up to a ventilator. The E-Vent team adapted the Ambu bags by attaching it to an automated mechanism that replicates a human. This project appears to be more expensive, and less functional than the University of Florida project.

Construction: 2020 Season

The building/ construction season is starting at Cliff Cottage today, 2020-04-01. Today, equipment will be positioned. Tomorrow, 2020-04-02, if all goes well, the utility trailer will be taken out to purchase building supplies, so that these do not become a bottleneck. This date is chosen because it is the first day after we come out of quarantine.

This building activity means there will be less time to write weblog posts. Unless something changes, posts will be published only on the first day of each month, from April (this post) to September 2020.

The weblog season will begin again 2020-10-01, with a post that has already been written, titled Hipster. Other posts about computing equipment have also been written.

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