Published research shows pets are highly likely to suffer an anaesthesia related harm or fatality. For humans anaesthesia is much safer thanks in part to Laryngeal Masks, which are conduit devices that are inserted through the mouth and seal in the larynx.
Laryngeal Masks for humans do not work on pets; therefore, to make an improvement in veterinary anaesthesia the project was to create species-specific laryngeal masks for a start-up.
In collaboration with veterinarians R&D was done to define the correct contours and features needed to produce laryngeal masks that work on pets.
The big problem unique to animals was stopping over and under insertion of the device. This was resolved by adding a ‘shoulder’ shaped feature below the neck of the device, which when coming into contact with faucial pillars in the back of the mouth gave a correct and positive stop. Other novel features added improve device stability and reduce the risk of ‘blue tongue’.
All tasks to get product designs refined, manufactured, branded, and launched to international markets were also carried out.
The product for Cats won an award.
Positive reviews in Veterinary Journals and Practitioners.
Use of device is taught in universities around the world.
Products is sold around the world
Created the next generation sealing mechanism.
International Patents Granted
(Improved Stopper Device: WO2012110954 A1)
Bacterial and Viral Filters are used to protect patients from cross infection. Pleated membrane HEPA filters are one type used by many clinicians, and the market is large and very competitive.
Filter material is shaped into a cartridge then glued and sealed into plastic housings with ports for attachment to respiratory apparatus.
The problem was unit production cost was too high and needed a product redesign was necessary to hit a competitive target cost.
Seeing someone get sprayed with rainwater by a car was the inspiration for a new approach to manufacturing. In a similar way, by quickly pushing a flat surface onto a continuous bead of hot melt glue it too will squirt to one side, in this case all around the outside of the cartridge.
This approach simultaneously adheres and seals the cartridge to the plastic housings, thereby reducing assembly processes and enable the use lower cost plastics. It also inspired the use of a 2-shot moulding process to integrate a label and port cap in one process, thereby further reduce assembly and part costs.
In addition to reducing production cost, product performance was incrementally improved because more of the filter material became active to increasing filtration efficiency and breathability.
Reduced unit production cost by 37.5%.
Increased production capacity.
Improved filtration efficiency.
Reduced resistance to breathing.
Increased gsales and business reputation.
Granted international patents for competitive advantage.
(Patent Publication No. WO2003047674A1)
A Self-Sealing Watertrap is used to collect and dispose of excess water accumulated in patient respiratory tubes. The water comes from cooled water vapor within a gases to and from a patient. Removing it prevents harm to patients and equipment.
The device is sold as part of respiratory breathing systems within highly competitive global market.
The problem was current product’s high production cost was hindering sales growth and profitability. To solve the commercial problem it was decided to redesign the Watertrap so unit production cost is reduced by 75%.
The inspiration for a new Watertrap came from how holes are aligned and misaligned on rotating caps on salt and pepper containers.
By aligning the holes on two components water in breathing tubes can drain into a base container. The detaching of the base moves one component so its holes become misaligned with the holes of the other component, and with a rubber seal between them, the device maintains pressure in the tubes. Reattaching the base realigns the holes and restarts the process of capturing further condensed water.
This solution enabled a rubber seal of low material content be moulded simultaneously with another component to reduce part and assembly cost. It also enables the product to use lower cost sustainable materials and became a design that delivered faster manual and automated assembly.
Achieved a 75% reduction in production cost.
Materials and production processes are more sustainable.
Product gives a superior seal and user feel.
Global sales of breathing systems continue to grow.
Profitability of breathing systems are much higher.
Granted International patents for competitive advantage. (Patent Nos. EP1272245B1, WO2003047674A1)