Ventilating Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for emergency medical staff.
Partnering with medics at the Rambam Health Care Campus, the Technion team at the Design-Tech Lab devised an innovative system to dramatically improve the efficacy of protective masks used by medical staff. Called Air-Shield, the novel device continuously blows air on the face, upgrading protection while eliminating fogging and overheating caused by a buildup of condensation inside protective gear.
The invention generates airflow downwards from the forehead area and creates an air shield inside the protective mask that isolates the doctor from the surrounding atmosphere, which may carry COVID-19 droplets. A small pump attached to the waist blows air through a tube up to the forehead, which is expelled via small holes in a manifold attached to the mask.
Chair of the Technion Industrial Design Program, Prof. Ezri Tarazi based the idea on pumps used in the IDF protective masks against nuclear, biological, and chemical warfare, and adapted them to the needs of the medical professionals.
“We integrated a thin flexible tube, a lightweight manifold, a thin shield, and a rechargeable battery,” he said. “All the components already existed, except for the manifold, which is being manufactured at Technion using industrial 3D printers.” The air-shield is in use in hospitals all over Israel and in the US.
Israel’s responses to the incessant barrage of new threats reflect quick thinking, rapid paradigm shifts, creativity, and mind-blowing innovation.