The COVID-19FabLab was established to address the global shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) and medical equipment needed in the current global pandemic. Based at the Maroun Semaan Faculty of Engineering and Architecture, it brings together engineering and design know-how from across the departments with real-life problems faced at the American University of Beirut Medical Center (AUBMC) and Pandemic Evaluation Clinic and Center.
All technology, designs (suitable for 3D printing), and reports produced at the COVID-19FabLab are open-source and available for download.
Project 0: AUB N95 Mask
This project aims to provide medical personnel with a reusable respirator mask to guard against inhalation exposure to COVID-19 virus particles in the air, using widely available materials. Key design constraints: trap at least 95% of any size of airborne particle, seal against the face with biocompatible materials, be wearable for hours at a time, have easily replaced filter elements by the user.
Project 1: AUB COVID Non-invasive Ventilation Mask
The COVID-19 pandemic is a challenging situation where healthcare workers must not only determine the best course of treatment, but also ensure that the virus is not being spread. Project 1 aims to design and manufacture pioneered parts to optimize non-invasive ventilators (NIV) against virus spread inside hospitals.
Traditionally, NIV systems which provide oxygenation and ventilation support to coronavirus patients don’t provide any means of filtration for the exhaled air of the patient into the atmosphere. COVID-19FabLab 3D printed parts allow health care providers to add viral filters to the non-invasive mask which will then filter out more than 99% of all viral particles so that the exhaled air is a near-zero risk of spreading the virus.
The team is working around the clock designing, prototyping, and testing respirators and masks made from locally-sourced materials.
The COVID-19FabLab virtually brings together faculty, students, and staff from MSFEA's mechanical, biomedical, and chemical engineering departments. Also involved are American University of Beirut Medical Center (AUBMC) medical personnel and the AUB Environmental Health, Safety, and Risk Management office (EHSRM).
The COVID-19FabLab has partnered with the INDEVCO Group to develop filter materials appropriate for surgical masks and N95 respirators, and with Manufacturing and Technology Solutions (MTS) to manufacture durable, reusable N95 respirator masks designed at the FabLab.
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