Avatar The Last Air Blender

Low-Cost Oxygen-Air Blender for Improvised bCPAP


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Membership level
2022-2023 Team
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Team Name
Avatar The Last Air Blender
Project Title
Low-Cost Oxygen-Air Blender for Improvised bCPAP
Design Challenge
Extremely premature babies (born before 28 weeks of gestation) often have fatal difficulty breathing due to collapsing alveoli, also known as respiratory distress syndrome (RDS). Because of RDS, of the 2.4 million babies born extremely premature annually, up to 95% of them will require respiratory support. Currently, Bubble Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (bCPAP) therapy is an effective method employed in both high and low resource settings to provide pressure in the lungs that prevents alveoli collapse while simultaneously delivering therapeutic oxygen at adjustable concentrations. However, due to high prices and unreliable electric grids, low-resource settings often resort to using improvised bCPAP that delivers pure oxygen from pressurized cylinders. With no way to deliver lower concentrations, neonates receive 100% oxygen gas and experience complications such as an eye disease called retinopathy of prematurity. This condition occurs when blood vessels in the retina grow abnormally and potentially leak, which can eventually lead to blindness in babies. Additionally, the neonate may experience chronic lung disease, which causes difficulty in breathing. These preventable medical complications in neonates can be solved by creating an adjustable, self-powered, and inexpensive air blender that can lower the concentration of oxygen being delivered. If this need is met, we will be able to provide clinicians with a chemically accurate device to prevent blindness and chronic lung disease in newborn babies requiring respiratory support.
Date Updated
Tuesday, May 02, 2023
  • Global Health Technologies
  • Bioengineering
Team Type
Other Design

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Oshman Engineering Design Kitchen
Rice University

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Phone: 713.348.OEDK

Email: oedk@rice.edu

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