Innovation and adaptability are in our DNA. When Roland ‘RD’ Dane (Triple Eight Racing Engineering’s Managing Director) suggested we turn our racing expertise to ventilators, we jumped at the opportunity to not only learn some new tricks, but hopefully make a difference to Australia’s fight against Covid-19.

Speaking with Speedcafe, RD heaped praised on the entire Triple Eight crew who have been working tirelessly on this project since the postponement of the Supercars season was implemented.

“We’ve worked on this for the last couple of weeks to come up with a prototype of a workable concept trying to use readily available materials,” RD said.

“We did it so that we could show that if we ever had our backs up against the wall in Australia that we could hopefully help to come up with a solution for this issue.

“We’re demonstrating that we have the capability and the willingness to try and assist in the solving of a potential problem here, which we hope we never have to actually face up to on an Italian scale.”

RD said the design will be readily available to allow production of the ventilator or variations of it locally and abroad.

“This is completely designed by us and executed by us. Now whether the concept and the machine ever gets used here, or anything like it, is another matter.

“There could be other places where we will be happily providing the concept.

“The way we’ve executed on an open-source basis is so that if someone in Indonesia wanted to do it or further afield they would be able to hopefully get some pointers to a local solution.

“We’ve made a prototype to prove that it can be done. Then if anyone on a local level in Australia wants to pick it up and take it further with us then they can.”

Triple Eight Race Engineering Team Manager, Mark ‘Dutto’ Dutton, acknowledged the entire team who has been working behind the scenes to deliver a fully functioning prototype over the last 10 days.

“Roland first grabbed JJ (Jeromy Moore, Triple Eight Technical Director) and me and had a chat to see what we could do. We then called upon Peter Ringwood (Performance and Data Engineer) to manage the electrical side of the project,” Dutto said.

“We then got (David) Cauchi and Shippy (Grant McPherson, Race Engineers), then started expanding to machine shop with Craig Johnstone and Len Carlson, David Hadfield sourcing parts, James (Xiberras) helping with the engineering designs and Jess (Dane) and Roland helping with research for the project.

“I also roped my sister in who’s an anesthetist, so she helped supply the parts and provide information because this isn’t our field of expertise. Having those resources to say, ‘this is what the machine needs to do, as well as what it shouldn’t do,’ which is just as important.”

Dutto also explained the importance of getting Triple Eight’s ventilator in the hands of those who need it most.

“We do want this to be open source. At the end of the day, this is to help the world, so any information people can help us to improve the product and if we can get other people around the world further ahead with their own designs, or take ours and use it – it’s out there for everyone.”

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