Design Knowledge Intermediary
The "Babypod" is designed to be light, strong and easily accessible
The Williams Babypod 20 infant carrier (foreground) owes at lot to F1 car tech
The 'Babypod' carrier that comes with an F1 pedigree

Formula 1 technology has had an impact in many other sectors, from aeronautics to cycling, public transport to data analytics, but now Williams has come up with a hi-tech carrier for critically ill new-born babies.

The materials and techniques used to build Williams' F1 cars, for example, are now being used to make an altogether different type of transport - for new-born babies.

The Babypod 20, as it is known, is a sleek, lightweight box with a sliding transparent lid and a heavily padded interior. It is designed for transporting infants who are critically ill, whether by car, ambulance or helicopter.

It looks pretty basic, but is the result of an intensive development process. The material used in the design is carbon fibre, the same remarkably strong material used in F1 cars.

Carrying new-born babies from place to place is not easy.

They need to be kept at a constant temperature and protected from vibration and noise, while being monitored closely by medical staff.

In the past, incubators were used. But these are heavy, cumbersome devices, that require an external electricity supply and often dedicated vehicles to carry them as well.

The Babypod was initially developed by AHT as a lightweight and more practical alternative. Williams was then called in to develop a new, more advanced design.


- www.bbc.com