"CRN_01 "Hummingbird" " swabs were developed in response to the logistics crisis at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic and shortages in medical supplies, reported directly by the medics with whom I have contact in my professional work. The project wouldn't have been possible without the consultation and invaluable expertise of these specialists.
Knowledge about the development of the pandemic depended on massively performed tests. Thus, testing swabs were a basic necessity, and the simplification of their production – was a real opportunity to support the health care sector.
The swabs available on the market are produced in two stages: injection molded and then flocked. In order to obtain the right parameters of the smear, specific flocks are needed, and therefore also proper machines for their application. "The CRN_01 project", on the other hand, has a one-step production process, faster and cheaper – just the molding.
In the spirit of biomimetics, the form of the swab was inspired by the hummingbird's tongue, adjusted to collect nectar from flowers. The designed grooves and cavities allow for collection and deposition of large amounts of sample material, thus ensuring testing efficiency. Moreover, due to the lack of flocks, "CRN_01" swabs "give back" for testing more of the collected sample than regular swabs.
The project passed diagnosticians’ verification, and the first injection mold and production series were already made. Years of experience with advanced 3D printing and design for injection molds allowed me to create a project in the spirit of "rapid prototyping". Less than two months passed from the idea to the implementation of the first series of swabs and more than a week of it was taken by the process of intricate electro-drilling of the mold.
A graduate of the Design Faculty at the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw, I previously studied at the Faculties of Physics and Chemistry of the University of Warsaw. The background of scientific education allows me to maintain an analytical approach in my design projects. Since 2014, I have been gaining professional experience working for the Polish technology company Sygnis SA.
For me, design is a vocation. I believe that as designers, we should direct our gaze to regions that do not promise profit or market value. We are to search for genuine needs and answer the yearning present in people.