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  • Writer's pictureMrinali K

Bioengineering Students Develop a New CPR Simulator

Shannon D’Souza, Ayesha Ellahi, Eileen Johnson, Noshin Nawar, Shrey Maheshwari

Senior Design Team, Class of 2019, Bioengineering Department

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

CPR Buddy is comprised of five bioengineering students at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign for the purpose of our capstone senior design project. Our project was sponsored by IEMS (Illinois Emergency Medical Services) with the goal to create a simple and affordable training device to teach hands-only CPR without the aid of an instructor. The scope of our project requirements included implementation of real-time feedback, affordability, intuitive training, durability, and portability. At the beginning of our senior year, we collaborated with Mrinali Kesavadas at CPR Saves ( and much of our progress began thanks to her design. Her step by step guide to building a high quality CPR simulator using easily accessible technology solved many of our concerns, including the use of user feedback, affordability, and portability. Expanding on her design, we kept the FlexiForce force sensor to test for force and rate of compression, and we added a Hall Effect sensor to test for depth of compression. The force sensor outputs the total number of successful compressions to an LCD screen along with feedback on the rate, alerting the user if they need to speed up or slow down. The Hall Effect sensor illuminates an LED light if the proper depth of compression has been reached. The combination of sensors provides internal cross-validation of our system thereby giving CPR Buddy an accuracy of 97% in its measurements. We also wanted to emulate the feeling of performing CPR on a real person as closely as possible. This was accomplished by using a large cylinder of ExoFlex (0010) silicon under the area of compression with a wooden circle placed on top. The silicon mimics the feeling of the chest while the wood circle represents the sternum along with providing a solid placement for the force sensor. The sensors and silicon were then placed in a sturdy box to improve durability. A silicon flap of ExoFlex (0010) molded to the shape of a mannequin’s chest was placed over the box, and the outside edge of the same mannequin was put on top, again to improve durability. All circuitry was contained to a small control box to the side of the trainer, where the feedback is easily seen by the user. It is easy to use as the user need only to read the informational posters on CPR and how to use CPR Buddy provided before simply switching the model on. CPR Buddy can be seen in figure. CPR Buddy would like to thank Mrinali Kesavadas at, IEMS, and the UIUC Bioengineering Department for the amazing experience and endless help!

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