RWTH and Luisenhospital Are Supporting Viessmann in Developing a Simple Ventilator
RWTH and Luisenhospital are supporting Viessmann in developing a simple ventilator. Mass production is possible at short notice, as it was possible to fall back on the proven technology of gas condensing boilers.
During the corona crisis it has quickly became apparent that some countries do not have a sufficient number of ventilators. In Germany, the situation for patient care for those affected has been good so far, but critical shortages can quickly arise in countries whose health care system infrastructure is not as developed or that have higher case numbers.
Viessmann has therefore decided to develop a device for the emergency ventilation of patients at very short notice and to use standard assemblies that facilitate short-term production in high volumes and quality. Dr. Markus Klausner, Chief Technology Officer Viessmann Climate Solutions, emphasizes that all the ideas for this innovative solution come from the company's own employees and the partners involved.
A team from the E.ON Energy Research Center (ERC) at RWTH Aachen University strongly supported the development of this ventilator, which is being carried out in close cooperation with physicians from Luisenhospital in Aachen – the academic teaching hospital associated with the University’s Faculty of Medicine – and other hospitals too. The Department of Anaesthesiology at Uniklinik RWTH Aachen and the Medical Information Technology Helmholtz-Institute for Biomedical Engineering also provided information here. The ventilators enable an individual adjustment of the relevant pressure levels as well as the breathing rate and allow a variable admixture of oxygen, thus meeting the basic requirements for invasive ventilation of COVID-19 patients.
The compact ventilators are mobile and are not necessarily dependent on the technical infrastructure of a hospital, because they can be operated either via the hospital's oxygen supply or alternatively with a connected oxygen cylinder. Luisenhospital has already given the new device a positive assessment of the suitability of the equipment. With the support of the German Federal Ministry of Health, Viessmann is working together with the German Federal Office for Drugs and Medical Devices to obtain the special approval that has now been launched.
One of the production lines for wall-mounted gas appliances at the Viessmann Group's headquarters in Allendorf, Hesse, was converted in a matter of days to be able to manufacture intensive care products. Many components of the gas wall devices, such as the electronic gas and air connection, could be adopted for the ventilators. Viessmann also has a very flexible production facility, which could be adapted to the new requirements in a very short time.