Mercedes: Production of COVID-19 breathing aid in full swing at Brixworth

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Mercedes has announced that the design of the breathing aid engineered in part by its Brixworth HPP unit and destined to COVID-19 patients will be made freely available to manufacturers.

Mercedes, along with its fellow British-based F1 rivals, is exploiting its engineering resources to fight the global coronavirus pandemic.

The team's Brixworth HPP facility, which designs and builds the Silver Arrows squad's hybrid power unit, worked in tandem with engineers at University College London and clinicians at UCLH to design in record time the UCL-Ventura breathing aid, a Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) device that helps Covid-19 patients with lung infections to breathe more easily, when an oxygen mask alone is insufficient.

The breathing aid was produced within a rapid timeframe – it took fewer than 100 hours from the initial meeting to production of the first device. And all the details required to make the device are also now available for manufacturers to download from UCL's licensing website.

"Since the project was announced, we have received an incredible number of enquiries about the CPAP device from around the world," said Andy Cowell, managing director of Mercedes-AMG HPP.

"Making the design and manufacturing specifications openly available will allow companies around the world to produce these devices at speed and at scale to support the global response to Covid-19."

Following patient evaluations of the UCL-Ventura au UCLH and hospitals in the London area, The UK government has ordered up to 10,000 devices, with production now in full swing at Mercedes' Brixworth facility where 40 machines that would normally produce F1 pistons and turbochargers are being used for production of the CPAP devices.

Mercedes says that the entire Brixworth facility has been "re-purposed to meet this demand".

Professor Michael Arthur, UCL President & Provost said: "This demonstrates what extraordinary things can be achieved when universities, hospitals and industry work together for the national good.

"These devices, which can play a vital role in keeping patients out of intensive care, have been produced in just a couple of weeks as a result of the close collaboration between UCL, UCLH and HPP.

"The UCL community is incredibly proud of the entire team behind this breakthrough."

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