iFlow

iFlow

Airflow from the lungs are measured by applying an innovative, patented solid state technology.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION

Airflow from the lungs are measured by applying an innovative, patented solid state technology. The monitor has the capability of monitoring lung functions on a daily basis and downloading the data to a web based platform. This is especially useful in certain disease entities where lung function measurement becomes critical, such as asthma, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and cystic fibrosis.

UNIQUE CHARACTERISTIC

  • Small detachable lung function system, easy to transport.
  • Lightweight.
  • The app is user friendly.
  • The device gives accurate readings.
  • Uploading data on web is automated.
  • Airflow is measured using solid state technology.
  • Device is low-cost.
 
TARGET MARKET
  • Patients with lung-diseases needing to monitor their lung function.
  • Concept can be applied to monitoring in Neonatal critical care units.
 
VALUE PROPOSITION/BENEFIT
  • Solid-state technology with no moveable parts
  • Disposable
  • Low-cost
 
TECHNICAL DESCRIPTION
The sensor is constructed by building an array of needles, and a sensing probe. A Royer oscillator from a CCFL inverter is rectified to create a High voltage DC. The needles are connected to the negative output and the positive to a Wireless Bluetooth logging multi-meter. The negative input of the multi-meter is connected to the sensing electrode. The final design will be fed to a high-impedance voltage buffer, then a resistor divider with a protection diode to an Analog to digital converter and microcontroller. The output voltage varies largely depending on the length and amount (and thus surface area for charge build-up) of the electrodes, the surface area of the probe to capture the charge as well as the humidity of the air passing the needles.

PRINCIPAL RESEARCHERS

Professor Pieter Fourie, Department of Mechanical & Mechatronic Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Stellenbosch University
 
Professor Willie Perold, Department of Electrical & Electronic Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Stellenbosch University
 
Professor Johan Smith, Department of Paediatrics & Child Health, Stellenbosch University
 
Chris Fourie, Innovation4Life
 
Marco Steenkamp, Department of Electrical & Electronic Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Stellenbosch University
 
Johannes Vorster, Department of Mechanical & Mechatronic Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Stellenbosch University
 

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