Innovate 2 Ventilate

An Open Innovation Effort to Design a Rapidly Deployable Mechanical Ventilator


Our Approach

The CoVent-19 Challenge is the creation of 13 resident physicians, advisors, and several sponsoring organizations who have come together to create lasting solutions to the ventilator supply crisis made infamous by the COVID-19 pandemic.

As experts in mechanical ventilation and as those serving on the frontlines to treat patients impacted by COVID-19, we created the CoVent-19 Challenge to develop low-cost, rapidly manufacturable solutions to support heavily burdened modern medical facilities in the US and abroad.

The CoVent-19’s approach is to challenge current practices in medical device innovation, design, and manufacturing economics, by developing life-saving equipment in an open source, crowdsourced, highly affordable, and royalty-free manner.

Meet Our Finalists

Baxter Ventilator

Submitted by a team of educators, students, and alumni from Baxter Academy for Technology and Science (Portland, Maine).

Core Vent

Submitted by Ross Hunter of Armadilla Ltd., who recently won the Queen’s Innovation Award (Edinburgh, Scotland)

VOX (formerly InVent) - SECOND PLACE

Submitted by fuseproject, a design and innovation firm (San Francisco), and Cionic, a medical device technology company (San Francisco).

Lung Evolve

Submitted by an engineering team from the Universidad Nacional (Bogotá, Colombia) and Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana (Medellín, Colombia).

OP Vent

Submitted by a team from the Nvidia (Santa Clara, Calif.), Waymo (Mountain View, Calif.), Stanford University (Palo Alto, Calif.), and VA Palo Alto Health Care System.

Respiraworks - THIRD PLACE

Submitted by a global team of dozens of engineers, healthcare workers and other professionals with a focus on developing countries and low-resource communities.

Smithvent - FIRST PLACE

Sumbitted by a team of Smith College (Northampton, Mass.), engineering alumni and friends.

Support Our Finalists

While we have received significant in-kind backing to support our initial challenge and prototype development, we have launched a crowdfunding campaign to raise at least $250,000 to support prototyping, testing, production tooling, legal, regulatory and labor expenses.

Our Story

An idea was born

The CoVent-19 Challenge was founded by anesthesiology resident physician, Richard Boyer, MD PhD and 12 of his coresidents at Massachusetts General Hospital in response to the global ventilator crisis during the COVID-19 pandemic.  

Together we launched an open innovation 12-week Grand Challenge for engineers, innovators, designers, and makers on the GrabCAD Challenges platform on April 1, 2020.

An open call to the world

Our open call to the global community resulted in 213 ventilator entries from 43 countries! Participants came from diverse backgrounds and included high school students, designers, engineers, retirees, makers, and physicians.  Seven stellar designs were chosen to proceed to the invite only round.  

Ideas brought to life

The seven finalist teams were invited to our rapid prototyping round.  These teams have received access to additional resources from experts at Stratasys, Ximedica, Valispace and Sonos, and support in developing functional prototypes, including testing platforms, test lungs, and testing protocols. 

Prototypes will be evaluated using a testing platform provided by ADInstruments to determine which design best performs with regard to safety, reliability, manufacturability, affordability, and simplicity.

The final ventilator prototypes are due on June 21st and will then be evaluated by a team of expert medical and technical panelists to select one ventilator for production.

Future of our ventilator

We are targeting a first build production cost of $2,500 USD per ventilator, which is 10x less than prices of commercially available ICU ventilators. Future high volume builds will target a ventilator production cost of $1,000 to $1,500 USD. 

After the challenge, we are utilizing an award-winning medical device firm, Ximedica, to assist and advise on the ventilator development and help ensure compliance with all required standards prior to filing for the FDA Emergency Use Authorization.

Distribution of ventilator units will be need-based with special recognition of the regulating body’s authorization in the target country. We are aiming for up to 250 ventilators for the first build in August 2020, prior to the expected Fall 2020 rise in COVID-19 cases.

Our Team

Meet our program team, panels of medical and technical experts, and collaborators.

Meet The Team