Ashish Karan

Dr. Ashish Karn, faculty at the Department of Mechanical Engineering, UPES has developed a Comfortably Vented Indigenously Designed (COVID) Fabric Helmet for curbing infection spread in community settings such as schools, colleges and healthcare facilities

The faculty of UPES proved yet again that service to humanity will always be the priority for an academician. Dr. Ashish Karn has developed a Fabric Helmet for the first line of defence to fight the COVID-19 infections. The proposed design has been made available to the National Innovation Foundation with a consent to distribute it to the general public at various platforms. It has also been shared with DST MyGov Innovate Portal and FISS, Assam.

The nations are about to lift lockdowns and ease stringent measures in the better interest of the economy and its people. India, being no exception, after a continued stretch of a nation-wide lockdown, heads towards abating some of these restrictions, albeit a tremendous undercurrent of apprehension looms high in the hearts of millions of its concerned citizens.


Dr. Karn’s contribution has arrived just in time to help flatten the curve and reduce the burgeoning Coronavirus statistics. “There are many lingering questions, the answers to which seem elusive to the extreme. The life post lockdown is not going to be directed by predefined paradigms and may require some well-measured, prudent and cautious steps, particularly in community settings. This allusion to health and safety sounds a bit clichéd version of the rhetoric – prevention is better than cure,” said Dr.Karn,

The regular masks, he added, are uncomfortable and require constant adjustment. There are problems of humidity build-up inside the masks, high chances of leakage, problems with breathing, and one needs to take off the mask for ingesting liquids, food and medicine, even in a community setting or a crowded region. “To address these limitations,” he informed, “of the commercially available masks, a team of researchers from the MultiPhase Flows Laboratory (MPFL), Department of Mechanical Engineering, UPES, have proposed the design of a low-cost Comfortably Vented, Ingeniously Designed (COVID) fabric helmet. It is designed in such a way that usage of this cheap helmet along with the usually worn cloth is enough to provide complete protection to an individual.”

The fabric helmet is integrated with many innovative design features that will not only address the concerns of the users, it will also be comfortable, cheap and ease pressure on the requirement for PPEs, thus curtailing the COVID-19 infection spread in the country.

Dr.Karn believes that in the absence of a clear-cut pharmacological intervention such as a vaccine, the pandemic necessitates an active implementation of non-pharmacological interventions such as the need for a protective gear for the general public.