Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.

Auburn engineers develop a way to convert CPAP machines into ventilators

AUBURN, Ala. (EETV) - A team of faculty and staff from the Samuel Ginn College of Engineering’s Department of Mechanical Engineering as well as Critical respiratory care medical professionals developed a way to convert CPAP machines into functional ventilators that is inexpensive and quick.

The design, called Re-Invent, can be assembled in as little as four hours and drastically cuts the cost, using approximately $700 in readily available parts plus a CPAP machine, whereas a ventilator can cost as much as $25,000 or more. Continuous positive airway pressure, or CPAP, machines are commonly used to help people with obstructive sleep apnea breathe more easily during sleep.

This design comes at a time when ventilators are needed more than ever due to small amounts of supplies and rising cases that need respiratory assistance due to COVID-19.

One important change to a CPAP machine that Re-Invent includes is a filter for both inhaled and exhaled air to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Auburn Officials are working on the options to share the design with health care providers and manufacturers to be able to bring this design into hospitals to help increase the availability during the COVID-19 pandemic.