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Ventilator prototype proceeds to next stage of testing

The Oxvent prototype ventilator has been shortlisted by the UK government for the next stage of testing for safety and usability.

The Oxvent ventilator mask and pump
The Oxvent prototype ventilator

OxVent, a multidisciplinary team of engineers and medics at the University of Oxford and King’s College London, has been shortlisted by the UK Government to go to the next stage of testing for safety and usability for their ventilator prototype.

If the ventilator passes the required MHRA safety tests, it will rapidly move into production with the medical manufacturing company, Smith and Nephew (S&N) based in Hull.

The team, led by Oxford Professors Andrew Farmery, Mark Thompson and Alfonso Castrejon-Pita and DPhil student Rob Staruch and King's College London’s Professor Sebastien Ourselin and Dr Federico Formenti, have defined a simple, safe and scalable design that will meet the strict specifications for use with patients. The design will exploit off-the-shelf components and equipment with elements that can be produced through 3D printing techniques.

Dr Federico Formenti from King’s College London, said: ‘We are a group of academic engineers and anaesthetists from King’s College London and the University of Oxford and are honoured to be shortlisted by the UK Government in our endeavour to help strengthen the NHS in the coming weeks.

This green light enables the team to test their prototype ventilators, developed in response to the coronavirus pandemic and forecasted acute shortage of ventilators. The next stage would be the manufacture of 6,000 ventilators and deployment through the NHS. The design could also be used in other healthcare settings.

OxVent’s aim is to maximise impact in the UK, and reach beyond UK borders too. We have been overwhelmed with generous offers and messages of support from companies and individuals across the UK and beyond.’– Dr Federico Formenti, King's College London

Professor Mark Thompson from the University of Oxford said: ‘In less than two weeks the students, researchers and academics driving this project have brainstormed a prototype, built into a highly-structured efficient and effective team and won Government backing. Collaboration is in our DNA and I am so proud of the team and the amazing support from our universities.’

To find out more about the project and see videos visit:

In this story

Federico  Formenti

Federico Formenti

Senior Lecturer

Sebastien Ourselin

Sebastien Ourselin

Head of School, School of Biomedical Engineering & Imaging Sciences