“We have been offering our services of nanotechnology and electronic microscopy, assembling medical devices and our large medical grade 3D printing facility.”
I joined the College after finishing my previous role in Japan where I was working on neuron carbon nanotube interfaces – my research focused on the use of micro and nanotechnology for electronic interface with biology. I joined the Hamlyn Centre four years ago as a post-doctoral fellow, and I’m now working as the Interim Head of Facilities.
Since COVID-19 emerged in the UK, I took the active role of helping research projects at the College and our partners in the NHS. Part of the Institute for Global Health and Innovation, the Hamlyn Centre is focused on the development of medical robots, and more widely on engineering technology for the medical field. We have been offering our services of nanotechnology and electronic microscopy, assembly of medical devices, and our large medical grade 3D printing facility.
My role in these projects has focused on supporting communication between our team and any external requests, to discuss and assess the feasibility of various projects and to make sure that the facilities were ready to be used safely (especially when we were given very short notice).
We have supported projects such as prototyping a fully mechanical 3D printed ventilator in collaboration with the Department of Bioengineering. This project took advantage of our FDM industrial 3D printer – which is capable of printing medical grade polymer – and our expertise in design for additive manufactured equipment. We’ve been able to assemble a few prototypes in our laboratory.
We hope that after COVID-19, the Hamlyn Centre will be given more opportunities to collaborate and help other departments to develop, assemble and test medical technology in the future.
During this time, my main escape has been to reach out to my friends, colleagues and family worldwide and have frequent social events online (we have managed to play many board games). I have been cycling from my flat in Kennington to the College through central London, which has given me a chance to explore the city with a different perspective.