In the ongoing efforts against the coronavirus pandemic, Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has been using scientific endeavours to develop products in an accelerated manner. The DRDO laboratories are working with industry partners for volume production of special face masks and personal sanitisation chambers.
RCI, Hyderabad and TBRL, Chandigarh, have developed face protection masks for health care professionals handling the Covid-19 patients. Its lightweight makes it convenient for comfortable wear for long durations. This design uses commonly available A4 size Over-Head Projection (OHP) film for face protection.
The holding frame is manufactured using Fused Deposition Modelling (3D printing). The polylactic acid filament is used for 3D printing of the frame. This thermoplastic is derived from renewable resources such as corn starch or sugarcane and is biodegradable. The face mask will be mass-produced using an injection molding technique for volume production.
A hundred face shields are being produced daily in TBRL and provided to PGIMER, Chandigarh. Similarly, 100 are produced at RCI and have been handed over to ESIC, Hyderabad.
Vehicle Research and Development Establishment (VRDE), Ahmednagar, a DRDO laboratory has designed a full-body disinfection chamber called Personnel Sanitization Enclosure. This walkthrough enclosure is designed for personnel decontamination, one person at a time. This is a portable system equipped with sanitizers and soap dispenser.
The decontamination is started using a foot pedal at the entry. Upon entering the chamber, an electrically operated pump creates a disinfectant mist of hypo sodium chloride for disinfecting. The mist spray is calibrated for the operation of 25 secs and stops automatically indicating the completion of the operation.
As per the procedure, personnel undergoing disinfection will need to keep their eyes closed while inside the chamber. Approximately 650 personnel can pass through the chamber for disinfection until a refill is required.
The system has seen-through glass panels on sidewalls for monitoring purposes and is fitted with lights for illumination during night time operations. A separate operator cabin is provided to monitor overall operations.
The system has been manufactured with the help of Dass Hitachi Ltd, Ghaziabad. This system can be made in four days is used for the disinfection of personnel in the areas of controlled ingress and egress such as entry and exit to hospitals, malls, office buildings, and critical installations.