Design and construction of an automated air bag compression mechanism for a medical ventilator using Arduino.
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This article shows the design of a device to automatize an air bag compression mechanism for a medical ventilator using Arduino. The aim of this compassionate medical device is to provide an emergency alternative to conventional ventilator which are in much shortage and high purchasing cost which ranges from $5000 (UGX 17.5m) to $8000(UGX 28m) during the present COVID-19 pandemic. To develop the device, the classical method of product design based on concurrent engineering has been employed. First, the characteristics and the designed requirement (specifications) of the ventilator have been determined, including the function determining the air volume provided at every moment of the breathing cycle. Secondly, an adequate compression mechanism has been designed and automated by the program stored in the Arduino micro controller; Third, the various components that were bought from the market, their uses, design specification were described and then the programming codes of the various components were written in Arduino IDE software and stored in Arduino micro controller board. The device also features sensors to monitor the pressure and volume of the delivered air in order to prevent injuries while also ensuring a minimum PEEP pressure. Fourth, the control circuit of the stepper motor, has been determined, which can be operated via a knob and which includes sensor feedback that displays the result in the liquid crystal display (LCD) monitor; Fifth, the device has been materialized with readily available materials and market components, mostly of low cost; Sixth, the machine has been successfully tested, complying with sanitary regulations and operating within desirable ranges. And finally, the device has been already manufactured and is due approval from Ministry of Health (MOH) in order to start supplying it to several hospitals (health centers) across the country (Uganda).