Coronavirus Pandemic: NASA Engineers Develop Oxygen Hood To Reduce Reliance On Ventilators


Coronavirus pandemic is far more devastating than what was earlier estimated. The deadly virus, which knows no geographical border or other discrimination, has the entire world battling against it. Now, NASA is also helping out to combat the COVID-19 virus. The premier space agency has joined forces with a taskforce in California to build medical devices to help those infected.

 Coronavirus Pandemic: NASA Engineers Provide Relief With Oxygen Hood


The new partnership includes a lot of organizations. NASA noted that the Armstrong Flight Research Center partnered with Antelope Valley Hospital, the City of Lancaster, Virgin Galactic, The Spaceship Company (TSC), and Antelope Valley College have joined hands to increase the research and development to combat the deadly virus.

NASA Oxygen Hood

Together, the organizations are coming up with innovative and practical ideas to meet the shortage of medical equipment that could arise in the future. As part of this initiative, the first effort was to build a prototype oxygen hood, which has proven to work for the doctors at the hospital. The oxygen hood is believed to be a haven for medical staff and will boost the production up to 500 units at TSC's Faith Facility in California, NASA said.

Going into the details, NASA engineer Mike Buttigieg developed the oxygen hood for the COVID-19 patients exhibiting minor symptoms and will minimize the need for these patients to use ventilators. The device functions like a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine to force oxygen into a patient's low-functioning lungs.

"We looked across our center's expertise in innovation, engineering, design, and fabrication of unique systems, to bring NASA knowledge and people together to collaborate on solving the needs and challenges brought about by the COVID-19 situation," said Armstrong Chief Technologist David Voracek.

NASA Designs Canopy For Healthcare Staff

At the same time, NASA's oxygen hood is also a breathable space for healthcare workers. NASA engineer Allen Parker and this team at Armstrong designed a canopy that protects healthcare workers by safely covering COVID-19 patients while still allowing access to the patients to provide care.


"The patient will be located inside this canopy where aerosol viral contaminants will be vacuumed out through a viral filter located within the canopy. In doing so, the health provider can freely work around the patient outside the canopy with minimal risk," Parker said.

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