DRDO develops bio-suit for medical staff fighting COVID-19

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The suit originated out of a range of technologies developed to protect troops against chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) agents.

India's Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has developed bio suits for the doctors and paramedical staff who are in the frontline fighting the Coronavirus pandemic.

The DRDO scientists said that they have developed these suits in the light of the mounting demand for personal protective equipment across the nation. The shortage of personal protective equipment has been pausing huge problem for healthcare personal not only In India but also several countries as the cases kept rising.

The suit developed by the country’s premium defence research organisation will be of immense help to thousands of doctors, para medical staff and other health care workers who are engaged in providing care to the affected people.

In a statement, the DRDO said the suit originated out of a range of technologies developed to protect troops against chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) agents. The DRDO said it developed the CBRN Permeable Suit Mk V for the army and the National Disaster Response Force (53,000 units had been supplied to these forces).

“The labs have applied their technical knowledge and expertise in textile, coating technology and nanotechnology into research to find a solution in the form of a bio-suit to fight COVID-19,” the DRDO said.

This resulted in finding a specific type of fabric with a specific type of coating for making a bio-suit that can keep the medical, paramedical and other personnel requiring PPE safe from the disease. The organisation has clarified that the suit has been subjected to rigorous testing for textile parameters as well as protection against synthetic blood.

It added that mass production of the suit will begin soon. The DRDO said although a production capacity of 7,000 suits per day exists in the country, it was trying to bring in another industry with the experience in garment technology to ramp up the capacity to 15,000 suits per day.

Another hurdle was the non-availability of seam sealing tapes. DRDO said it has now prepared a special sealant as an alternative to seam sealing tape based on the sealant used in submarine applications.

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