The Raspberry Pi Foundation is known by many as the creators of those tiny computers that can fit into the palm of your hand. Due to this, the devices have a plethora of uses from gaming all the way up to medical equipment. Thankfully, during the current climate, it’s the latter that is extremely beneficial in creating tools to aid those working to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The Foundation’s Pi Zero variant is a fantastic little machine offering up specs of a single-core, 1GHz Broadcom BCM2835 processor and 512MB RAM while costing just $5. This makes it great for those stuck at home looking to tinker with some Linux based stuff but also makes it perfect for slotting into medical equipment. Ventilators are in dire need and it could be this incredibly small but cheap computer that could really help with shortages. These Raspberry Pi-powered ventilators are being worked on right now in Columbia, where some medical teams are using a design based on car parts in hope that it can transfer nicely over to a Pi brain. If this becomes a success, these ventilators will be tested on animals and then humans later down the road in other countries like the U.S.
If this does come to fruition, the Raspberry Pi Foundation has stock in abundance due to not building the boards to order and instead, building to add to the stock levels. This allows for shorter lead times and meaning they’re less likely to completely diminish, a stark contrast to the majority of products out there.
We think that if these Raspberry Pi’s can be utilized as the board going into medical equipment experiencing shortages, it could be the saving grace for those both fighting the disease and health workers. Let’s hope a working solution comes available sooner rather than later!