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Engineers of L3Harris Technologies have designed a low-cost, ventilation support system to help patients fighting coronavirus (Covid-19).

Under the government’s Hack-A-Vent Innovation Challenge, the team developed the Innovative Inspiratory Ideas (i3) Breather prototype in three weeks.

The prototype is a rapid development solution for ventilator availability and critical care requirements across the globe.

The challenge requirements included various respiratory, volume, pressure and humidity targets.

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Furthermore, the solution needs to have the ability to be easily assembled and operated by personnel using widely available commercial off-the-shelf parts.

Following a five-day agile sprint design process, the design of i3 Breather was developed. The i3 Breather is one of five designs selected for next phase testing. Once selected, the prototype was developed and delivered.

These five designs are currently undergoing testing for emergency use authorisation (EUA) from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

The EUA review process permits the FDA to strengthen public health protections by facilitating the availability and use during public health emergencies.

Employees from L3Harris, a student from Baylor University, a member of Maker’s Edge Makerspace in Waco, Texas, and six physicians from Texas and California are part of the i3 Breather team.

Additional support was extended to the company by Baylor University, Maker’s Edge Makerspace and McLennan Community College.

L3Harris Integrated Mission Systems president Sean Stackley said: “I am extremely proud and inspired by the i3 Breather team’s ability to develop a life-saving solution for a critical public health need in just three weeks.

“The result showcases their agility and innovative spirit and highlights the power of a government and industry partnership to combat a global crisis such as Covid-19.”