Researchers in Simon Fraser College’s Additive Manufacturing Lab are replicating a particular artform—the delicate folding of origami—to create 3D printable applied sciences to assist within the combat in opposition to COVID-19, and assist docs to determine and diagnose varied well being circumstances.
Highlighting the work, led by SFU College of Mechatronic Methods Engineering’s affiliate professor Woo Soo Kim, is a low-cost, transportable 3D-printed ventilator, pushed by a patented, clever 3D-printed origami tube. An in-depth overview of the design and improvement of the innovation, not too long ago evaluated by a neighborhood crew of respiratory therapists, has been printed within the journal Versatile and Printed Electronics.
The transportable mechanical ventilator is designed to help an individual’s respiration by reliably contracting a 3D-printed origami tube, somewhat than compressing a standard bag-valve masks (BVM), which reduces the general dimension of the assisted respiration machine with mechanical energy achieve. The 3D-printed design and light-weight supplies additionally lowers manufacturing prices.
In our transportable origami ventilator, greater than 95 per cent of elements might be 3D printable, that is why it’s actually cost-efficient. Different transportable ventilators can value over $2,000, however our 3D-printed ventilator might be produced for about $200.”
Woo Soo Kim, Affiliate Professor, SFU College of Mechatronic Methods Engineering
Kim says that the small and light-weight design, mixed with low manufacturing prices, makes their transportable ventilator helpful for treating COVID-19 sufferers or sufferers who want a compact and portable machine exterior of hospital settings, resembling long-term care properties or in distant rural areas and growing international locations.
The crew has partnered with Vancouver-based ventilator producer Pantheon Design and Delta-based 3D-printing firm Tinkerine, with assist from the Alliance program of the Pure Sciences and Engineering Analysis Council of Canada (NSERC). The crew can also be in search of additional funding and improvement companions with a aim of mass manufacturing.
Creating 3D origami-based dry electrodes for sensing robots to help healthcare professionals
Kim can also be growing and patenting 3D origami dry electrodes that can be utilized to observe affected person well being. This know-how is below the identical mental property technique of 3D printed origami applied sciences. The dry electrodes can detect and monitor physiological alerts, resembling heartbeat, respiration, temperature and muscle actions, all with the easy contact of the 3D origami dry electrodes.
Sooner or later, Kim envisions that this know-how may very well be used to help docs and nurses by permitting them to evaluate sufferers’ well being remotely via a robotic helper.
The humanoid robotic would additionally have the ability to monitor oxygen ranges – helpful in instances the place a affected person has developed extreme COVID-19. The information might be considered in real-time on the robotic’s monitor or despatched on to the healthcare supplier.
“The dry electrode does not have to be outfitted with the sensing robotic – it may be utilized in a hospital setting to exchange the moist gel kind electrode for electrophysiology resembling electrocardiogram or blood stress measurement functions,” Kim says. “Dry electrodes are simply one of many applied sciences below this portfolio of 3D origami applied sciences we’re growing right here at SFU.”
Kim, T-H., et al. (2021) 3D architectured air sensing tubes for a transportable mechanical ventilator. Versatile and Printed Electronics. doi.org/10.1088/2058-8585/ac1fd6.