Back to Top Skip to main content

Military scientists, engineers develop ventilator prototype in response to COVID-19

Dr. Andrew Schicho, Naval Surface Warfare Center, Panama City Division mechanical engineer, led one of the five teams by building a ventilator prototype in support of the Department of Defense Hack-a-Vent Innovation Challenge. (U.S. Navy photo by Eddie Green) Dr. Andrew Schicho, Naval Surface Warfare Center, Panama City Division mechanical engineer, led one of the five teams by building a ventilator prototype in support of the Department of Defense Hack-a-Vent Innovation Challenge. (U.S. Navy photo by Eddie Green)

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

PANAMA CITY, Fla. — In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, scientists and engineers at Naval Surface Warfare Center Panama City Division (NSWC PCD) are developing low-cost, easily-assembled, non FDA-approved ventilators that can be rapidly prototyped and used in both hospital and field settings. If approved, these prototypes could be used to support critical care requirements around the world.

During a period of only two weeks, the Department of Defense (DoD) Hack-a-Vent Innovation Challenge sought to ignite the brilliant minds and expertise of our Nation to respond to the threats overwhelming the medical system. Teams were charged with creating innovative prototypes using exclusively commercial-off-the-shelf items and/or 3D printed parts.

The NSWC PCD teams are comprised of mechanical, electrical, and systems engineers, as well as diving and life support subject matter experts, in addition to experts from the Naval Experimental Diving Unit and end-users, including medical professionals. The prototypes were developed and tested in partnership with NSWC PCD’s Center for Innovation.

Holly Gardner, NSWC PCD innovation lead, said this challenge identifies an emergent need that can be rapidly delivered across the globe through innovation.

“This is personal to me. My brother, a former Navy flight surgeon, is an emergency medicine physician and medical center director for two hospitals in the Dallas area. He has survived war in Iraq and Afghanistan, and now he and his team are putting their lives on the line to save people affected by COVID-19,” said Gardner. “This battle is just starting and they are already running out of medical supplies.”

Dr. Andrew Schicho, NSWC PCD mechanical engineer and one of the team leaders, said he wanted to develop a solution for the call because, “aside from the tragic loss of life, the emotional toll this must take on our health care providers is almost unimaginable,” said Schicho. “Knowing that the United States does not have a ready supply of ventilators to support the estimated need, I decided right then that I wanted to help."

Schicho and his team decided that building ventilators was how they serve the best at a time like this.

“Many people dedicated their time and were all so encouraging of the work,” said Schicho. “What really drove this home for us is that that we were onto something, that what we were doing was important, and that this device could actually be used to save someone’s life “

Despite the aggressive deadline, the employees remained committed to the task because they know producing a viable solution will serve a greater need. NSWC PCD submitted five different proposals, one of which had a working prototype that met all of the requirements.

The DoD Innovation Challenge teams will be notified after the submission deadline and the top three submissions will be selected by a panel of experts and may be offered an opportunity to produce a functioning prototype by March 30.

Disclaimer: Re-published content may have been edited for length and clarity. Read original post.

You also may be interested in...

COVID-19 Response

Video
11/27/2020
DHA Seal

Army Pfc. David Alvarado, assigned to the Javits New York Medical Station (JNYMS), talks about their position at JNYMS in support of the Department of Defense COVID-19 response, April 24, 2020. U.S. Northern Command, through U.S. Army North, is providing military support to the Federal Emergency Management Agency to help communities in need. (U.S. Army Video by Cpl. Rachel Thicklin.)

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

Minimize COVID-19 holiday spread with small gatherings, mask wearing

Article
11/25/2020
Soldiers standing in a line, wearing masks

The holiday season is upon us, and so is a drastic rise in coronavirus cases.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

NMRTU Everett Hospitalman makes a difference

Article
11/24/2020
Technician wearing a mask, giving a shot to a soldier

For much of 2020, Scott has also done her share and more to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Public Health

Army conducts commercial aircraft decontamination efficacy test

Article
11/24/2020
Man wearing mask, looking at ceiling of an airplane

Two commercial sprayers and two commercial liquid disinfectants will be tried in different combinations on surfaces in the passenger area to gauge effectiveness.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

Navy PA continues to care for COVID-19 caregivers

Article
11/19/2020
Three soldiers, wearing masks, demonstrating a hearing test

As a PAt, Osborn works hand-in-hand with supervising physicians and surgeons.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

NICoE & ISC Network maintain TBI care during COVID-19

Article
11/19/2020
Image of United States map with locations noted

The Network leveraged their geographic distribution to help each other quickly adapt to changing times.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Traumatic Brain Injury

San Antonio volunteers sought for Warp Speed vaccine trials

Article
11/18/2020
Woman typing on laptop

DOD sites are open on a voluntary basis to Military Health System beneficiaries.

Recommended Content:

COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | Coronavirus

Army combat medic earns U.S. citizenship, plans to continue serving

Article
11/18/2020
Two men wearing masks, one in a car, one leaning in the car

The native of Brazil is part of the COVID-19 testing team.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

Army doctors provide COVID-19 safety tips for the holiday season

Article
11/17/2020
Soldiers wearing masks, looking at flight information in airport

Celebrating the holidays during a pandemic may bring additional challenges for people this year.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | November Toolkit | November Holidays and Observances

Military Health System participating in COVID-19 vaccine trial

Article
11/17/2020
Woman measuring out a vaccine into a needle

How you can help test the vaccine.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts

DHA leaders recognize CCP collection campaign contributors & donors

Article
11/16/2020
Three military personnel in uniform, wearing masks, in front of flags

The ceremony honored those who contributed to exceeding the goal of collecting 10,000 units of COVID-19 convalescent plasma.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Convalescent Plasma Collection Program

NMRTU Everett staff collaborate to ensure Patient Centered Care

Article
11/16/2020
Image of two military personnel wearing masks

NMRTU Everett was commended by the MHS 2020 Advancement towards High Reliability Healthcare Awards Program as a Patient Centeredness Award winner.

Recommended Content:

Combat Support | Public Health | Coronavirus

Holiday Season Guidance to Minimize Spread of the Coronavirus Disease 2019

Publication
11/16/2020

This memorandum provides guidance to help protect individuals within the DoD community from coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) for gatherings and activities during the November to January holiday season.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

Naval Medical Forces Pacific’s commander tours NH Twentynine Palms

Article
11/12/2020
Four military personnel in uniform, wearing masks

Weber was briefed on the implementation of MHS GENESIS...and the hospital's response to COVID-19.

Recommended Content:

Combat Support | Health Readiness | Coronavirus | MHS GENESIS

Forging of civil-military anvil against COVID-19 focus at GHSA

Article
11/9/2020
U.S. and Thai soldiers stand together during a medical exercise.

“Defense partnerships around the world are key.”

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Global Health Engagement | Health Readiness | Global Health Engagement
<< < 1 2 3 4 5  ... > >> 
Showing results 1 - 15 Page 1 of 20

DHA Address: 7700 Arlington Boulevard | Suite 5101 | Falls Church, VA | 22042-5101

Some documents are presented in Portable Document Format (PDF). A PDF reader is required for viewing. Download a PDF Reader or learn more about PDFs.