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Educational Innovation: A Classroom Shifts Gears from Robots to Ventilators

In response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) health care crisis, mechatronics, a class taught by Yale Prof. Madhusudhan Venkadesan in mechanical engineering and materials science, quickly changed its final project from balancing robots to innovating ventilator designs. On the surface, the two projects may seem very different, but they have a lot of overlap in the mechanical principles behind each. Applying principles the students previously learned during the semester to several questions related to ventilator design, including the process for designing a control system, acceptable pressures for the human lung, and the proper flow rate, the class contributes to the pool of ideas on this problem being generated by the larger Yale community.

Switching from Robots to Ventilators: How a Class Responds to Covid-19

When students in Mechatronics (MENG 390) left for spring break, they expected to begin work on two-wheeled balancing robots upon their return. When classes resumed, though, their end-of the-semester class project had changed to exploring new ventilator designs.

Source: Yale School of Engineering and Applied Sciences
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