Amid COVID-19 crisis, Tesla is building ventilators from car parts
After downplaying the threat of COVID-19 on multiple occasions, Elon Musk is coming to the rescue of patients suffering from it. Tesla, the company owned by the billionaire, has prepared and showcased a ventilator prototype that has largely been designed from its car parts and will eventually be used by hospitals to provide breathing support to critical coronavirus cases. Here's all about it.
Just recently, Tesla shared a behind-the-scenes video showcasing an early prototype of the ventilator developed by its engineers. The machine, as the team described, uses components sourced for Tesla cars, as these parts are reliable, readily available, and can easily be used to scale up production and ensure proper supply to healthcare facilities in need of ventilators amid a global shortage.
In the video, the engineers say that their ventilator prototype uses parts from Tesla's Model 3 sedan. It employs the Model 3's infotainment system, which, when triggered with a vehicle touch screen, powers an onboard vehicle computer and controls the flow of gases into the ventilator. The set up also includes a vehicle suspension tank, which is used as an oxygen mixing chamber.
The latest video shows that Tesla's in-house ventilator can do the job, but the engineers say they have to do a lot of work to make it ready for production levels. "There is still a lot of work to do, but we are giving our best effort to make sure we can help some people out there," one of the engineers stated.
As of now, there is no saying when Tesla would begin supplying its own ventilators to hospitals across the US. The company has already sourced and distributed some 1,000 ventilators, but its own product could play a big role in supporting healthcare facilities overwhelmed with COVID-19 cases. Along with Tesla, Dyson, General Motors, MIT and Ford are also working to plug the ventilator shortage.