COVID-19 Heroes

Taher Saif, right, and students Onur Aydin, left, and Bashar Emon test common household fabrics used to make face masks to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. Photo courtesy Taher Saif.Many MechSE faculty, staff, students, and alumni have stepped up in the battle against COVID-19. Below are links to articles about many of these efforts.

Illinois undergrads lead global student movement to fight COVID-19
Covalence, a nearly 2,000-strong group of students from around the world, is making demonstrating the impact students can have through virtual collaboration.

Gall re-purposing surgical helmets in COVID-19 battle
MechSE alumnus and Duke University professor Ken Gall's team is creating a powered air-purifying respirator.

Hommema at center of massive mask-cleaning breakthrough
NBC News reports that MechSE alumnus Kevin Hommema's idea spurred $415M in funding for new decontamination systems.

Sridhar’s Bloom Energy steps aggressively into ventilator work
MechSE alumnus K.R. Sridhar was praised by California's governor for his innovative work in the COVID-19 battle.

Kashkari tells 60 Minutes about Federal Reserve response to crisis
MechSE alumnus Neel Kashkari, the former Treasury official who was in charge of the $700 billion government response to the 2008 financial crisis, tells 60 Minutes what tools the Federal Reserve can use to combat the economic stress being caused by COVID-19.

Researchers developing emergency ventilator for COVID-19 patients
Led by project leader Bill King, an expansive team is working around the clock to meet the surge in needed respiratory care.

Saif team identifies T-shirts as potential mask material
Making a homemade COVID mask? MechSE Professor Taher Saif explains best fabric choices.

Chamorro, colleagues engineering novel protective mask
The novel, highly-efficient, virus-preventive respirator mask was inspired by nasal structures of animals with enhanced olfactory sensitivity.

MechSE team vital to face shield production
MechSE's Machine Shop and Rapid Prototyping Lab are helping produce face shields for health professionals responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.

MechSE faculty, staff, students stepping up in COVID-19 battle
“These are amazingly talented engineers,” Professor William King said. “They have leaned in to really help on this project in a meaningful way.”