Design of Low Cost Temperature Controlled Neonatal Transportation Device

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Addis Ababa University


Temperature instability in preterm neonates is one of the major causes of morbidity and mortality. The immature systems and organs of preterm neonates in combination with poor facilities and after birth care lead to lifelong health complications, if not death. The drop of temperature in preterm neonatesneonate highly increases while they are transported through the embrace of nurses from delivery rooms to Neonatal Intensive Care Units (NICUs) in referral hospitals. They may also be transported by ambulances for large kilometers, because NICUs in Ethiopia are found only in referral hospitals. A significant drop of temperature in the surrounding environment during transportation makes the preterm neonates hypothermic and affects the whole function of their body. Therefore it‟s necessary to measure and optimize the neonates‟ body temperature to the normal level while they are being transported. In order to solve this problem, in this thesis we have designed and prototyped a novel portable device that can be used to transport the neonates in a temperature controlled environment. We believe that this device, once fully developed and implemented, can save thousands of lives of preterm neonates and avoid the pain caused to parents due to lose of their new born babies. The price and simplicity of our design makes it convenient for use in low resource settings and low income countries like Ethiopia. In our design, we have used temperature sensors and microcontroller to measure the body temperature of the preterm neonates and make the right decisions. Heater and fan are used to generate and circulate heat around the preterm neonate. Based on the temperature reading obtained from the temperature sensors, the microcontroller decides whether or not to turn the heater and fan ON. The system uses dis



preterm neonates, NICU, body temperature