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241 Self-sealing arm portholes

Date: May 2020
Designed by: STUCK Design
Credit: @stuckdesign

“To tackle aerosol sealing during COVID-19, hand portholes remain a difficult problem to solve. Hand portholes on enclosures, which protect healthcare workers doing medical procedures, rarely hug snugly around the arms during use. They have gaping holes at the moment of entry or exit. This breaches the enclosure and increases the exposure of the healthcare workers. The ideal portholes should offer a tight seal and promote freedom of movement. With this in mind, STUCK Design creates an adaptable seal using simple and cost-effective mechanisms that keeps the seal tight when in use. It is quick to open and close, while still retaining arm dexterity. Two new porthole mechanisms have been designed.The first is the Multi-Band Porthole, which comprises a sleeve and multiple elastic bands. The sleeve provides a closable conduit, while the elastic bands perform the closing action on the conduit. By combining two or more elastic bands in various orientations, the gaps left by each band is sufficiently covered, while allowing each band to operate independently along its axis.

The next is the Quick-Seal Porthole, which makes use of 3 elastic elements of a patent-pending geometry. Arranging these elastic layers in an interlocking spiral creates a close-hugging and flexible seal around objects slipping in and out.

Without the need for complicated mechanisms, the adaptable seals keep the portholes closed while accommodating and actively conforming to various shapes and sizes of arms and equipment. The flexibility and self-sealing properties give doctors the freedom of movement and dexterity during medical procedures while achieving a better enclosing function. It is also low-cost and easy to manufacture, making for quick implementation in a variety of applications.”