Clearpack and PARC develop low-cost ‘Respimatic 100’ respirator

Filling the gap between the Ambu bag and a ventilator

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Clearpack
Respimatic 100 - A low cost respirator, designed to fit in the huge capability gap between a hand powered Ambu bag and a full featured ventilator. Photo - Clearpack

Greater Noida based packaging machine manufacturer Clearpack and Rajasthan-based social incubator PilaniAtmaNirbhar Resource Center (PARC) has developed a low-cost ventilator ‘Respimatic 100.’ The quickly-built device is to aid in the overall needs for respiratory equipment and ventilators during the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

The Respimatic 100 is designed to fit in the capability gap between a hand-powered Ambu bag and a full-featured ventilator. According to Clearpack CEO, Govind Bhandari, “There are many situations where a complex ventilator is either unavailable or unaffordable, but a hand-powered Ambu bag falls way short of the need. The need for such a device will continue well beyond the current COVID-19 pandemic, especially in remote parts of India.”

 

According to Clearpack, it took three days for three iterations of a new respirator design starting from scratch. In addition, working prototypes of three iterations have been undergoing stress tests continuously for the past number of days. Meanwhile, the company is readying all the necessary documentation required for formal certification from the concerned authorities. In parallel, Clearpack is working on its next version of the current device to add yet another critical ventilation mode.

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Three prototypes, middle one is the latest one. Photo – Clearpack

The BITS alumni network

“In addition to the technical challenges, there were some unique challenges posed by the lockdown orders in force. The factories were closed; technical teams could not meet face-to-face, important components could not be sourced and other constraints. This is where the vast BITS alumni network came into play. All these issues were tackled and resolved on a war footing by connecting with alumni who were uniquely qualified for the task. We must also acknowledge the facilitation by the Greater Noida authorities, which was crucial,” Bhandari said.

 

The project was led by Bhandari, while his team included a geographically dispersed Clearpack workforce along with four doctors who advised on the clinical aspects, a ventilator design veteran who advised on the technical aspects and a medical electronics expert from Italy.

 

Bhandari also acknowledges that this respirator will need further refinement as it undergoes tests. He added, “No doubt that the certification process is arduous. No doubt, there will be unexpected challenges. However, that is what this team is geared up for. All in all, a great example of what large hearts, determination, and collaboration can do.”

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

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– Naresh Khanna

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