The Lagos State Polytechnic, one of the foremost institution of technology in Nigeria, has developed four important equipment to help in fighting against the ravaging novel Coronavirus pandemic.
Immediate past Rector of the school, Mr Samuel Olayinka Sogunro, while leading pressmen to inspect the machines, stated that the inventions, which are the initiative of the Mechanical Department of the institution, are the school’s contributions to the collective fight against CVD – 19 pandemic.
The invented machines – Sensor Control Hand Washing Machine, Mechanical Ventilator, Foot Pedal Hand Washing Machine and Human Disinfection/Sanitizing Booth, were presented to selected pressmen at the Ikorodu main campus of the institution on Wednesday, May 27, 2020, at the Department of Mechanical Engineering.
Sogunro, who officially bowed out as Rector of the Polytechnic on Friday (yesterday), stated that the drive for the inventions came as a result of the ravaging Coronavirus.
“With the period that we are in with COVID – 19 everywhere in the world, these innovations are our own quota as an institution of technology in tackling the pandemic”, he said.
“Immediately we heard about it, (the outbreak of the pandemic) exactly 28th of March, I had to call the engineers in the School of Engineering to ask them what can we do to contribute to the fight against the virus.
“The first thing that we did was the N95 respirator which was tested by the Medical Director and certified okay.
“All these machines should have been ready a long time ago but for the lockdown issue. Some of our staff that were involved in there development are staying in the neighbouring state (Ogun State) and you know it was a total lockdown there”, Sogunro explained.
“Majorly, we have done all these to contribute our own quota to the situation in our country. We don’t need to be going outside (the country) to get all these things. Since we can fabricate them and put them to use here, it is better for us.
“It is even considerable to buy them here. With all that we have done, we can mass produced them.
He also told reporters about the institution’s plans for mass production and how much each unit of the items will cost, adding that his successor will do the presentation to the government and continue with other aspects of the inventions after his exit on Friday.
Sogunro said that the target of the technological institution is to get investors to come in and assist in financing the new innovations and the old ones.
“We are aware of the financial constraint on the government due to the economic downturn. The most important thing now is to bring investors in for further development of the inventions and not government”, he declared.
“It is left for the investors to key into it and help with the further development so that it can reach those in need, the government is just to be aware of it.
“These are not the only things that we have been able to do here. We have gotten patent rights for other innovations like Electric Biogas, Automatic Jack and Fuelless Generator. We also want investors to look at them too and take them up from where we stopped”, Sogunro said.
Dr Luqman Aremu Animashaun, Acting Director, Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Centre and member of the School of Engineering of the Polytechnic, speaking with THE IMPACT, stated that the inventions would help in preventing the ravaging virus from spreading.
He added that the ventilator would assist victims of the virus and babies with respiratory challenges to breadth properly.
He recommended the machines for schools, markets, malls and other public places.
“These machines can help prevent the transmission of COVID – 19 in places where people do gather like cinemas, market and shopping malls. They will be needed to combat the virus and its transmission.
“They are also going to be of help in the light of the government’s decision to open up everywhere. In other not to take any chance, these devices are needed to prevent coronavirus transmission.
“The ventilator is meant for severely infected person where the lung is highly infected and in other to give such assistance pending the time the lung heals, the mechanical ventilator is needed.
“Not many hospital has the ventilator before the emergence of COVID – 19 and most hospitals normally refer there patients to the Teaching hospitals whenever they are in need”.
Dr Animashaun also stated that the ventilator would come handy for hospitals which before now lack the facility.
“Presently, the population of people having lung infections and needing ventilators are higher than the available ventilators, that’s why we as an institution focussed on assisting people that are in need of the ventilator.
“After Coronavirus, we expected our hospitals to be better equipped to take care of patients and children in need of respiratory assistance”.
He also hinted about the plans of the institution to mass produce the inventions for public use.
“We have plans to mass produce these equipment. In fact, we have three campuses and students close to 29, 000 and we really need to give them assurance that they are safe in our schools”, he said.
“We are ready to partner with the Lagos State Government, that’s our priority. These equipment can assist market places, hospitals, shopping malls in the State.
“A single unit of this booth is $7000 and there is a company in Nigeria selling it, but our own is less than that. That’s why we are trying to make it available at some public places to help their hygiene level”, he revealed.
A Technologist in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, who was among the team that developed the machines, Mr Sheriff Lamide, described the innovations as great projects which are in line with the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) guidelines and which would help in managing CONVID – 19.
“The conceptualization and idea generation came in during the lockdown. We looked at the dimension that the pandemic has taken which has almost crippled the whole world and we decided to contribute in solving the problem”, he said.
“It was really challenging. We had to face the challenges and work as a team to succeed”, the Technologist recalled.
“What we have done will help in preventing the spread of COVlD – 19 since there is no cure for it. We have gone in the direction of the World Health Organisation (WHO) in terms of disinfectant, sanitizing and treatment of COVID – 19 patients.
“We have followed the guidelines of WHO to be in tandem with what they have recommended as means of managing the pandemic. These are great projects that are very helpful”, he said.