Mumbai: It’s mandatory for the frontline workers to wear PPE kits and mask for a longer duration on a daily basis during the COVID-19 pandemic. It impacts doctors, nurses, attendants and many other medical staff associated with the job and they develop certain fungal or bacterial infections.
This is exactly what 19-year-old Nihaal Singh Adarsh’s mother, who is a doctor herself, was going through every day. Nihal, a second-year engineering student at the KJ Somaiya College of Engineering, Mumbai, couldn’t take his mother’s plight and end up developing a belt-like wearable ventilation system for PPE kits.
The ventilation system, known as Cov-Tech Ventilation System, can be attached to any kind of PPE kit and can be used for 6-8 hours.
“She (mother) told me most doctors were facing it. In May last year, my college KJ Somaiya Institute of Management and its business incubator RIIDL organised a design challenge for creating solutions for COVID-19. I spoke to my mother, Dr Poonam Kaur Adarsh, who deals with COVID patients regularly. She told me about the issues they face and that’s when I decided to attempt to solve this problem,” Nihal was quoted as saying by EdexLive.
After sketching the first prototype, Nihaal took help from his college seniors and enquired whether they can build something like a ventilation system for PPEs.
“My senior helped me out with the initial design. I travelled alone in the month of May from Pune to Mumbai, took special permission from college and the state government. I was given the keys to the prototype development lab in my college and I was alone on campus. I stayed in the same hostel room and worked on it. RIIDL had issued a letter stating that I was working on a COVID-related project. I had to get my RT-PCR test done and then I was allowed to work on it in my college premises,” Nihaal said.
Cov-Tech Ventilation System’s first working prototype was developed in 21 days, however, the entire process took a year to finalise, Nihal said.