A new type of aerosol shield, co-designed by Renault’s CFD department, has been approved for use by NHS trusts, in order to improve treatment of Covid-19 patients.
Amid the absence of on-track action Formula 1 teams turned their engineering and development nous to the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
Teams assisted with the redesign and development of breathing aids and ventilators, and also helped produce Personal Protective Equipment.
The ‘Oxford Box’ has been designed to keep frontline staff safe during the intubation of patients and staff at the Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust have labelled it a significant breakthrough.
The device was developed by businesses in the Silverstone Technology Cluster, including Enovation Consultancy Ltd and One Group Engineering.
Renault’s Formula 1 team, based at nearby Enstone, collaborated with the University of Oxford’s Oxford Simulation, Teaching and Research centre to help with the development of the new innovation.
The finalised device weighs just 7kg and has a flat-pack construction that enables it to be re-allocated rapidly in the event of an emergency, stored easily, and sterilised more effectively.
Following extensive trials and training OUH has approved use across its four hospitals in Oxford and Banbury, while a prototype paediatric version is being assessed.
“We modelled the speed, direction and air flow as we would in F1 and were thus able to advise the best placement, size and shape of the box to take its protection level to near 100 per cent for the treating medic,” said Renault’s Head of CFD Paul Cusdin.
“The models were complex to establish, but by applying the principles we would do in developing a car, we were able to improve its protection and condense development from months to weeks.
“F1 is once again proving its capacity to apply its thinking, technology and processes in speeding up the help we can give to those in genuine need.
“I hope this will be yet another tool in the ongoing fight against COVID-19.”