Working prototype of an emergency ventilator for COVID-19 patients
Find out about our collaboration with Belkin
University of Illinois Researchers Publish Article
Describing Illinois RapidVent Emergency Ventilator
The design, testing, and validation of the Illinois RapidVent emergency ventilator has been published in the journal Plos One. The article, “Emergency Ventilator for COVID-19,” by University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign researchers, is the first of its kind to report such details about an emergency ventilator that was designed, prototyped, and tested at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
ABOUT THE PROJECT
The COVID-19 pandemic made clear the importance of emergency ventilator support—and that surges of people in respiratory distress or cases in areas where conventional, full-featured ventilators are unavailable can create a critical need for that support. On March 16, 2020, a team of more than 40 engineers, doctors, medical professionals, designers, and manufacturing experts from industry launched an Apollo 13-style project to help address that need.
The team focused on designing a device that could help the sickest patients to breathe, by plugging into the oxygen source available in most hospital rooms or into a tank of oxygen. Less than one week later, the team demonstrated a working prototype. Illinois RapidVent prototypes have run for more than 1.5 million breathing cycles, and the design had been licensed by more than 60 external organizations.
On May 12, 2020, Belkin announced that it was collaborating with The Grainger College of Engineering to produce an emergency ventilator based on the Illinois RapidVent concept, pending review and approval of the company’s Emergency Use Authorization application by the Food and Drug Administration.
Belkin has announced plans to produce FlexVent, based on the Illinois RapidVent design, pending FDA approval.
"This is Apollo 13...
We have a team of brilliant and dedicated people that made something that actually works in less than one week. It’s very inspiring. We hope that we can engage even more people to work on the global response to COVID-19 as we continue to develop the prototype.”
William King, professor in The Grainger College of Engineering and the Carle Illinois College of Medicine
This project was made possible in part thanks to philanthropic support from alumni and friends to the Grainger Engineering Priority Fund. Gifts to the fund provide vital unrestricted support which allows the college to strategically invest in critical initiatives - including how we respond in times of global crisis.
The University of Illinois is publishing the accompanying preliminary results of research (“content”) from faculty and employees of the University of Illinois (individually “Author” or collectively “Authors”). This publication only applies to the content provided here and does not apply to any other information, products, publications, or services of the Authors.
The content is being released in this manner to maximize the potential public benefit during this urgent need for measures to respond to the SARS-CoV-2 (formerly CoVID-19) crisis, including promoting potential manufacturing pathways in light of the shortage of ventilators.
The content has not been reviewed or approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Interested readers are encouraged to contact the FDA and review available FDA materials, such as the following guidance on ventilators:
PLEASE NOTE: The content has not been peer reviewed. The Authors make no representations or warranties of any kind (express or implied) relating to accuracy, safety, usefulness, usability, marketability, performance, or otherwise of the content released here. The Authors disclaim all express and implied warranties of merchantability and fitness of the content for a particular purpose, and disclaims all express and implied warranties regarding non-infringement of any patent, copyright, trademark, or other rights of third parties in the content or use of the content, or in the making, using, or selling products or services by any person or entity.
People or entities attempting to use the content in any way, including creating products or offering services, assume all risk and responsibility related to those uses, including all legal and regulatory compliance, safety, efficacy, performance, design, marketability, title, and quality. The Authors assume no liability related to the actions of third parties and in respect of any infringement of any patent, copyright, or other right of third parties.
The content has not been used in testing with humans at this time.
The Authors’ names and logos, and the names and logos of Carle Health, Creative Thermal Solutions, Inc., and Tekmill, Inc., are trademarks or other exclusive property of the Authors. Readers of the content shall not use the name or logo of any Author in any way for publicity, advertising, or other commercial purposes, including linked to the reader’s products or services. Readers of the content shall not make statements or representations that, in Author’s sole judgment, deliberately or inadvertently claim, suggest, or give the appearance or impression of a relationship with or endorsement by that Author.