The Novel Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) epidemic appears to be slowing in countries practicing social distancing measures, but we’re not out of the water yet. Serious medical equipment shortages continue to dog hospitals around the world, and officials are bracing for worst-case scenarios: medical triage.

Here’s how one entrepreneur channeled his concern for a high-risk family member into action, using his training and resources to aid the fight against equipment shortages. Dugan Karnazes, founder and CEO of Velocity Research, joined the Open Source Ventilator project (OSV), a world-wide effort to develop and design a simple, low-cost emergency-use ventilator to aid in the treatment of COVID-19 patients.

Karnazes joined Judy Warner on the OnTrack Podcast to discuss these efforts, and detailed how he and the OSV project were able to enlist the help of hundreds of engineers and medical professionals, as well as support from corporations like Ford, Worthington, CircuitHub, DigiKey, and Altium.

Show Highlights

  • Dugan Karnazes discusses his background in Physics and Electrical Engineering and his career in R&D.
  • A small team with a broad skill set: Dugan on starting Velocity Research, and the value building teams with diverse technical backgrounds. 
  • Dugan shares a personal account of how the threat of COVID-19 affects him, and how he turned heartbreak into motivation to join the front-lines in the fight against equipment shortages during the COVID-19 crisis.
  • Open Source Ventilator project (OSV) and how it is addressing the worldwide ventilator shortage.
  • How the Open Source Ventilator project (OSV) became a massive collective of worldwide contributors.
  • Casting a wide net: How Dugan helped to draw in more than 800 engineers worldwide to offer their skills to the OSV project.
  • Altium responds to the OSV project’s call.
  • The Open Source Ventilator project turns to Altium 365: How Dugan leveraged Altium’s software to add hundreds of engineers to the Open Source Ventilator project, and went from having a need to having a distributed solution within 24 hours. 
  • Dugan explains how collaboration (and a bit of synchronicity) between Altium, Circuithub, Digi-Key, and Worthington helped reduce critical OSV development cycles from weeks to mere hours.
  • Enter the medical professionals: Dugan’s contact at Spectrum Health Innovations sets up a team of pulmonary specialists, respiratory therapists, and other medical industry professionals to provide live feedback on OSV project developments.
  • Ford Motor Company joins the fight—shares resources with the OSV project and commits to making 50,000 ventilators: How the automotive giant is leveraging existing hardware and supply chains to help the OSV project while developing their own ventilators. 
  • Dugan discloses the sobering prediction that Michigan was 5-10 days away from hitting capacity on ventilators, and details the horrifying medical triage decisions this would entail for medical professionals.
  • Dugan shares diagrams and photographs of the OSV project’s ventilator prototype!

Fundraiser by Dugan Karnazes : Open Source Ventilator

Resources:

Dugan Karnazes on LinkedIn

Velocity Research website

Velocity Research on  LinkedIn

Look, the ventilator is coming together! Dugan shares 3D rendering and an actual photo.

OSV on Twitter

OSV on Linkedin

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