Cardio Cardigan - A robotic wearable designed to provide life-saving chest compressions and greater mobility to those with heart conditions.
Milo Eirew
St John's School
Floor Location : M 083 H

Heart disease is the leading cause of death worldwide. A major problem is the need for very fast action in the event of heart failure. Just a few minutes’ delay can change the cardiac arrest victim's prognosis from strong recovery to permanent injuries or probable death. People with cardiovascular issues need to be active and exercise, but fear being alone and far from medical help. If you were prone to cardiac arrest, for instance, you would benefit with exercise but might fear hiking mountains alone because undergoing cardiac arrest would likely be fatal.

To combat this lack of mobility, I set myself the task of designing and constructing a functional robotic wearable (the “Cardio Cardigan”) to detect cardiac arrest and provide life-saving chest compressions. This is provided by two stepper motors mounted on the back of the vest.

The device utilizes a pulse sensor to read a person's heartbeat information, an Arduino UNO to process and analyze this information, two stepper motor drivers to send direction and pulse signals to the motors, and two HT34-504 stepper motors to spool a section of belt in and out, compressing the chest with 40-60 lbs of force. Important values such as the analysis sample time and compression profile (depth and number of compressions in a demonstration) can be altered through the sketch. The code was written in the Arduino IDE.

While only a prototype, this can form the basis of a future iteration in which compressions are more targeted and the components are minituarized as far as possible. It could also alert emergency crews as cardiac arrest is detected and provide a GPS location.