VentCU functions by automating the compression of an Ambu-bag manual resuscitator (which are widely available and stocked in medical facilities). Built from a rigid 80/20 aluminum extrusion frame, a sprung arm is pulled down by a simple rope and pulley system to compress the Ambu-bag. Breaths per minute, tidal volume and inspiration to expiration ratio are set and monitored on a user friendly touch screen controlled by a Raspberry Pi. The system is designed to operate as reliably and safely as possible, and includes redundant sensing capabilities for alarm condition detection.
Assuming all parts are bought new, a fully functional device costs under $900, a fraction of the cost of any ventilator currently available on the market, allowing for rapid production and mass adoption. All components are immediately available from multiple vendors in large quantities. Furthermore, these components are likely in stock in many hobbyist, hardware store, and student robotics team inventories, and these local organizations can be engaged to help provide hardware, skilled labor, and troubleshooting capabilities.
VentCU is fully open source and built to be as modular and modifiable as possible to accommodate a wide range of use cases and available components.