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    Erdmann Solutions highlights importance of early stage testing

    news-releasesErdmann Solutions AG
    September 6th 2023

    Neuhausen, Switzerland:- Award-winning design and engineering agency Erdmann Solutions says its experience with innovative designs shows how early stage research and testing can spell the difference between success and failure in pharma and medical device markets.

    As part of its overall Human Centered Design (HCD) approach, Erdmann’s methodology places great stress on familiarization with the whole spectrum of market needs and expectations at every level, not least among end users.

    Lifebox case study

    The soundness of this approach has been showcased by the success of Lifebox from Neo Rescue AG, a product for which no-one previously realized there was a market.

    Lifebox is a unique infant rescue life support chamber, that is heat and flame resistant and incorporates an organic oxygen supply that can be used by rescuers to carry infants out of fire, smoke, or toxic gas release zones.

    Learning from life

    Lifebox is the brainchild of David Selinger, former Vice-Commander of the Aarau Cantonal Hospital (KSA) company fire brigade, following his disturbing experience of a ‘near-miss’ 2015 fire in the KSA neonatology department) in which many babies were placed in peril. On this occasion, the fire was quickly controlled with no injuries, but for Selinger it provided clear warning that his team had no safe way of evacuating infants from smoke-filled spaces.

    He was inspired to design Lifebox as a self-contained life support evacuation system capable of carrying two babies. He became CEO of NeoRescue, based in Unterentfelden, in partnership with four other ex-KSA staffers.

    Idea to reality

    However, as the late Apple Computer founder Steve Jobs remarked, ‘Geniuses ship’: no innovative idea has actual value unless it can be brought to market. For this aspect, NeoRescue turned to Erdmann, which is normally involved in numerous start-up projects, helping young companies to evolve designs to become more market-friendly and assisting with product development and marketing.

    The Erdmann design team has more than 40 years of design and branding experience in medical technology and a proven methodology that is based on researching and resting the market to find out what users expect and need from the product.

    For Lifebox, this meant intensive collaboration with rescue and medical professionals to establish what a usable Lifebox should look like and the balance between price and benefits that would make it essential blue light team equipment.

    The user research and testing confirmed that the biggest design challenge was to protect infants from smoke and heat since just two or three inhalations of smoke can prove fatal to a baby while . raising body core temperature more than four degrees from the usual 23 degrees Celsius can lead to circulatory problems and, in extreme cases, to death.

    Designed for emergencies

    Usability studies and scenario planning also showed that existing recue methods from a neonatal hospital were limited to wheeling bulky incubators out from the ward or trying to shield infants inside the firefighter’s own protective jacket.

    Early-stage testing using Human Centered methodology confirmed that the Lifebox therefore needed to exclude smoke or fumes, that it needed to be compact and lightweight and highly intuitive to use even in limited visibility and while wearing protective equipment.

    Erdmann Solutions supported the development team to create a form factor concept with features that included following features:

    • Space for two babies side by side
    • Intrinsic over pressure system and air supply
    • Usable without medical expertise
    • Easy to handle and transport
    • External monitoring of oxygen levels
    • A simple three step process to place infants in box, close down and check air supply

    Support for Innovation

    Erdmann Solutions helps start-up companies with its HCD services that engineer the design to actual user and market needs. It can also act as investor, developer and board member. In NeoRescue’s case, Erdmann took on the task of selecting the right material for the box and perfecting the design.

    In their collaboration with NeoRescue since 2017, Erdmann’s inputs have also included naming and branding, financing support, detailed product design, prototyping and development, and support with commercial scale manufacturing.

    Market success

    A prototype device with insulation and air supply was built via a network for prototype productions and in Erdmann’s own workshop, which NeoRescue was able to present in clinics. After two years of intensive development, the Lifebox was ready for presentation at the 2019 COMPAMED trade fair in Düsseldorf, followed by take up from medical and emergency services from around the world.

    Erdmann Solutions co-founder Raimund Erdmann commented: “The success of Lifebox only emphasizes how important it is for the success of a medical or pharma product to do the research and testing at the earliest stage in the project to understand where the market benefits are.”

    “Often we find that the human centered design process not only shows what the product should be, but also reveal markets that the innovators may not have considered originally,” he added.

    About Erdmann Solutions

    Erdmann Solutions AG (Erdmann) offers award-winning human-centered Design and Engineering services that are particularly applicable to Life Sciences and Med Tech applications. including devices, control systems, delivery, production systems and packaging solutions.

    The Erdmann Solutions Approach are built around Innovation, Human Centric Design underpinned by usability engineering and testing and Branding Expertise, bringing tightly knit and dynamic design teams to focus on innovation and real customer needs, with particular expertise in high-risk in technologies in Medical and Pharmaceutical Procedures.

    Erdmann Solutions was founded in Brugg operating in Neuhausen, close to Zurich, in 1978 by industrial designer Raimund Erdmann, who still leads the company. Since then, it has won more than 50 outstanding awards for its work with companies worldwide.

    Further information at:


    Click on Industrial Medical Design for NeoRescue AG to learn more.
    Click on NeoRescue AG to find out more Lifebox (German language).


    Erdmann design human-centered, sustainable solutions. With a heart for innovation, we help organizations create experiences that amplify human values every step of the way - from concept to final production

    Erdmann Solutions highlights importance of early stage testing

    Lifebox forms a self-contained life support system for two babies in a single lightweight container.

    Erdmann Solutions highlights importance of early stage testing

    Lifebox is easy to operate for medical staff and easier for rescue personnel to carry.

    Erdmann Solutions highlights importance of early stage testing

    Erdmann early-stage research and testing involved medical and emergency professionals.

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