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Parts shortage may pull the plug on ventilator-making – ETtech


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India’s efforts to shore up manufacturing of ventilators to cope with the fast unfold of Covid-19 infections may unravel in the absence of a neighborhood electronics parts business. The ban on worldwide flights has made worse the difficulty, with producers struggling to raise sensors, chips and controllers from suppliers in China.

AgVa Healthcare, which makes ventilators at one-fifth the value of imported ones, says the flight ban has hit provide of sensors, chips and micro controllers from China, crucial to constructing ventilators in massive numbers. The firm is trying to scale up manufacturing to 20,000 items to satisfy the rising demand.

“The electronic components are ready at Shenzhen. They are unable to ship it to us because of the flight ban,” mentioned Prof Diwakar Vaish, cofounder of AgVa. “If we don’t get it, our production will be hit.”

India is an enormous importer of electronics attributable to the absence of a homegrown business. Efforts to construct native semiconductor fabrication amenities over the final 20 years have been lacklustre attributable to excessive prices and a scarcity of steady coverage.India’s area company owns a fabrication facility at Semi-Conductor Laboratory in Chandigarh, whereas the defence analysis company has a unit for strategic use.

Most of the 750-800 medical gadgets corporations import parts akin to sensors, chips and micro controllers. The nation’s medical gadgets market is round $10 billion, backed by a authorities push to provide merchandise domestically. “(Device) manufacturing depends on components, the majority (around 60%) from China. All of us have a challenge,” mentioned A Vijayarajan, cofounder of InnAccel, a medical gadgets firm.

“Based on communication with Chinese vendors, they seem to be ready to ship (components). Now, the problem is with the logistics…because of controlled flights”.

Analysts say that whereas the manufacturing of parts is again to hurry in China, demand for medical electronics has shot up considerably.

“The supply chain is getting back to normal. Demand is going to go up as other countries are also seeing this (Covid-19),” says Parv Sharma, analysis analyst at Counterpoint Research. “Vital components are coming from China for ventilators, it is true for smartphones.”

Skanray, a Mysuru-based medical electronics producer, says it’s taking a look at a 3-pronged technique to battle the shortfall in imported parts and produce over 100,000 ventilators inside a brief interval. It has parts for the first batch of 5,000 items and might work with different producers for the subsequent 30,000. For the relaxation, it plans to work with the Defence Research and Development Organisation and ask Bharat Electronics to assist share parts.

“The demand for medical specific components has gone up. We have to work around these and use components for consumer electronics and entertainment, where demand has dropped due to Covid-19,” mentioned Vishwaprasad Alva, founder, Skanray. “The smart thing (to do) is to design around the electronics.”

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