What started with an idea of integrating AED in a drone, is now saving lives by diagnosing patients with cardiac arrhythmias and treating them with defibrillation. Developed by FlyPulse, a Sweden-based startup, the LifeDrone AED system is equipped with an automated external defibrillator (AED) — a portable electronic device that automatically diagnoses the life threatening cardiac arrhythmias and is able to treat them through defibrillation, the application of electrical therapy.
The company develops, sell, and provide services with LifeDrone AED to medical and rescue service providers. The system can improve the survival rate for people with cardiac arrest, where it is difficult to arrive with an AED in time with ambulances or other transportation. To better understand the system, we interviewed FlyPulse CEO, Sebastian Wallman. Here are some exclusive inputs from him on the system:
How efficient is the system?
To check the efficiency of the system, the company looked at the response times of the drone and ambulances. And the speed at which it arrived at the location, it was 4 times faster than the ambulances, which was commendable. The project is still in its developmental phase and the scientists are verifying its clinical benefit. But for FlyPulse, the success stories of the system looks promising enough that it can be used on patients directly wherever the case is critical.
Partners involved in the project
Currently, the project is being developed in association with FlytBase, an advanced drone software development platform. But in the process of building the prototype, FlytBase was not involved. But to make it more a commercial and production ready product, he said, “We restarted the software and at a perfect time we heard about FlytBase and could a highly increased speed and status of the development.” But now that FlyPulse have FlytOS, which is the FlytBase Operating System for drones, on the UAV, they can use the cloud service to communicate with the drone.
He added, “We find cooperation is the key for this, and we try to find components and companies that fit into the system like for instance FlytBase that helps the system with robust connectivity and drone control.”
What is the objective of the project?
FlyPulse’s goal is to make ready the new system by 2018 summer. That will be the first time when FlyPulse hope that it can run the system in parallel with normal rescue and ambulances to see if the LifeDrone AED system can increase the survival rate. “So far we have verified we can arrive faster than ambulance in many places, now we want to put it to real test,” said Wallman.
To reach their goal, FlyPulse needs to build and integrate a number of complex technologies. This includes the mechanical drone system, its payload, electronics, and the software to manage complete operations, with a high level of automation. Of course, they have to build a viable business model around this technology, and make sure that the technology addresses the requirements of all key stakeholders.