Project Inspiration is an initiative of TU Delft which donates ventilators to lower-income countries. The ventilator is designed such that countries can decide themselves whether to order or to (partially) replicate the machine. The goal of Project Inspiration is to help countries with their shortage of breathing equipment and to provide basic healthcare worldwide.
Gerwin Smit, an Assistant Professor at Delft University of Technology and a specialist in arm and leg prostheses and medical aids, initiated Project Inspiration together with colleagues and students in March 2020 to address the expected shortage of ventilators in the then upcoming crisis. The pandemic situation meant a number of extra challenges for these medical engineers, like a shortage of supplies due to the shutdown of the Chinese supply chain. Besides that, medical devices are subjected to a battery of tests before they can be placed on the market. It goes without saying that this takes a certain amount of time, and in this situation time was of the essence. In the midst of this turmoil, Gerwin couldn’t help asking himself the question: how can we make a bunch of mechanical ventilators, certified and proven to operate safely, in a very short amount of time?
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