IIT Startup Made Ventilators That Are 90% Cheaper Than Imported Ones
IIT Kanpur's incubated venture Nocca Robotics has developed ventilators specially for Covid19 that costs 1/10th of the ventilators that India had been importing till now. Here is more about the innovative startup at crucial time of corona.
IIT Kanpur's incubated venture Nocca Robotics has developed ventilators specially for Covid19 that costs 1/10th of the ventilators that India had been importing till now.
The company plans to start shipment of the indigenously-developed ventilator from by the first week of June, IIT Kanpur incubation centre in-charge Amitabha Bandyopadhyaya, who is also co-founder of Nocca Robotics, told PTI.
Nocca Robotics co-founder Nikhil Kurele said the company has kept safety and security of health workers as a top-most priority while developing a ventilator specially to treat coronavirus patients. The price of imported ventilators starts from Rs 8 lakh and goes up to as high as Rs 25 lakh a unit, whereas, Nocca Robotics ventilator is priced only at Rs 1.45 Lakhs per unit
However, these ventilators will be particularly focused on treating COVID-19 patients. So they cannot fully be compared with full-fledged ventilators which cost a lot more. Only invasive ventilators can treat COVID-19 patients, Kurele said, adding that the team first designed a non-invasive ventilator.
After getting feedback from doctors, they started working on an invasive ventilator. "We found that when a virus-infected patient on a ventilator breathes out, he exhales air filled with virus loads. This exhaled air fills the ICU with coronavirus which is hazardous for health workers. In our ventilator we have made ultraviolet filter chambers, which kill viruses, and placed filters thereafter to free the exhaled air from viruses," Kurele said. He said that the ventilator can be used both in ICU as well as ported out to handle patients in other locations like trains etc. "It is portable. The ventilator can work for 4 hours on battery as well," Kurele said.
He said that doctors and medical professionals were taken on board to design the ventilator as per Indian requirements and to understand the challenges around coronavirus.
"We analysed 5-6 high-end ventilators that are mostly preferred by big hospitals but did not find filters in them to clear virus load. We found ventilators in use have not been designed to handle virus infection of this scale," Kurele said.
"Our objective is not to get into this (ventilator) business. Our objective is to fill in the gap which is there in the market and help the way we can (to fight COVID-19)," the IIT Kanpur alumnus said.
“We are truly impressed by what the young engineers from IIT Kanpur have been able to achieve in such a short time and I hope that more such innovative solutions will come from Indian technopreneurs. I am happy that BDL has partnered with IIT Kanpur in manufacturing of these ventilators on a large scale. Together, we will give our best to serve the nation at this critical hour,” said Commodore Siddharth Mishra (retd), chairman and managing director of BDL.
If more demand comes then the production will be raised up to 30,000 units by August. Nocca Robotics has also onboard Indian medical device makers Avi Healthcare and Polybond for the manufacturing of ventilators.
Nocca Robotics has already made global headlines for their effort to build low-cost ventilators that have potential to save thousands of lives.