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BabyPod incubator created using F1 technology

Designers are using Formula One technology to make it safer to transport babies in emergency situations.

The advanced engineering branch of the Williams Group have created the Babypod 20, an incubator that can withstand up to a 20 G-force crash.

The pod is being used by intensive care ambulances used at specialist children's hospital Great Ormond Street Hospital, who also contributed to the carrier's design.

The carrier - which is made from carbon-fibre - was created in the company's facility in Grove, Oxfordshire and has been designed alongside Advanced Healthcare Technology (AHT).

Craig Wilson, managing director of Williams Advanced Engineering, said: "The parallels between a Formula One car and transport device for babies may not be immediately apparent, but both demand a lightweight and strong structure that keeps the occupant safe in the event of an accident, and can monitor vital signs whilst remaining easily transportable and accessible.

"We have taken the existing Babypod product and worked with AHT to create a device that is not only more compact and user-friendly but, crucially, can be scaled up in its production so that more hospitals can benefit from this Formula One-inspired technology."

Mark Lait, design director at AHT, added: "Our focus over the last ten years has been to provide safe transport and occupancy devices for babies and small children. Assisting the talented teams of specialist Doctors, Nurses and Technicians to retrieve sick babies and transport them to the most suitable 'centres of excellence' for the life-saving treatment they require.

"As a UK company we are particularly pleased to have the opportunity to work with the designers and engineers at Williams, to develop this 'next generation' of BabyPods, and to harness their knowledge and skills to make this new model available. This design, with reduced weight and increased strength, has also delivered improved features of protection against vibration and noise and of course the dangers related to impact, which inevitably sometimes occur with medical vehicles traveling at speed."

Each Babypod costs around £5,000, which is a "significantly reduced price" compared to a standard transport incubator.

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