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These ingenious student inventions in Jamaica and Morocco can help fight COVID-19

student inventions
National Health Service (NHS) medic checks for blood and fluids under ultraviolet (UV) light. UV light can also be used to kill bacteria, as one student invention shows. Source: Simon Davis/UK Department for International Development/AFP

Student inventions are exciting because they provide a glimpse of future innovation. But in the time of COVID-19, certain student inventions are not only relevant but of absolute necessity right now.

As universities and scientists spring into new research and development, students all over the world are coming up with products and services crucial in the fight against fight COVID-19, little different than soldiers being deployed in war.

Check out and celebrate these impressive student inventions to see what we mean.

Jamaica: Ultraviolet device that kills bacteria on doorknobs

student inventions

Jamaican student Rayvon Stewart invented a device that kills bacteria on doorknobs. Source: thecommonwealth.org

Rayvon Stewart, final-year student in the School of Computing and Information Technology at Jamaica’s University of Technology, started developing his creation well before COVID-19.

Dubbed XERMOSOL, this student invention is a simple device that kills bacteria on doorknobs with ultraviolet light technology.

Rayvon identified the need for germ-killing technology during the Klebsiella outbreak in Jamaica five years ago.

“I made a determined decision that I was going to find a solution to limit the transfer of pathogens to multiple surfaces, thereby saving lives,” he said.

student inventions

A sign in France reads “COVID-19 please keep the door open”. The coronavirus can live up to three days on stainless steel and metal, which makes doorknobs a contact point for transmission. Source: Damien Meyer/AFP

XERMOSOL can be fixed to doorknobs in public spaces such as hospitals, schools and offices to destroy viral cells. Since the novel coronavirus can live up to three days on stainless steel and metal, XERMOSOL provides a quick and safe method to kill bacteria at a critical contact point – and it is 99.9 percent effective.

In late March, Commonwealth Secretary-General Baroness Patricia Scotland touted this student invention as a “possible key weapon in the fight to contain the spread of COVID-19”.

However, XERMOSOL now faces the classic challenges of commercial development: funding and mass manufacturing. Therefore, Scotland proposes the 54 member countries go into partnership with the Global Innovation Fund to help young innovators like Rayvon.

Rayvon already has a provisional patent on this technology and is currently developing a prototype with his team in Jamaica.

Morocco: Award-winning student inventions to support healthcare

student inventions

Healthcare apps can help doctors work safely and efficiently during a pandemic. Source: Philippe Lopez/AFP

Students from the Moroccan School of Engineering Sciences (EMSI) have developed three medical inventions that stole the show at the Hackathon Virtual MaroCovid19 competition. These can be applied to ease medical checks and healthcare processes in the fight against COVID-19.

The first student invention is African Savior, an app-based system that delivers nasal swab test kits via drone to patients with COVID-19 symptoms. This allows healthcare professionals to remotely test for the virus without putting themselves at risk.

Then there’s the Digital Medical Respiratory System, which delivers information about the patient’s respiratory system to doctors. Doctors can then remotely adjust pressure and respiratory flow and be alerted in critical situations.

The third student invention digitises medical prescriptions. Called the Moroccan Electronic Perspective, doctors can use an app to send prescriptions directly to a pharmacy. To receive their medicine, all patients have to do is identify their pharmacy with a QR code.

“Our students’ ideas will soon be incubated by the company Lafactory and will be put at the disposal of our country to contribute to the nationwide efforts in tackling the spread of the pandemic,” said EMSI General Manager Kamal Daissaoui.

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