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Australian student developed a tool to help combat coronavirus

Photo: Tool developed to help combat coronavirus
A Melbourne university student has developed a tool that prevents hands from contacting surfaces that might have been contaminated by coronavirus.

A university student has developed a tool that eliminates the need to touch potentially unhygienic surfaces in a bid to stop the spread of coronavirus.

Muthu Vellayappan is a PhD student at Melbourne's Monash University and saw the need for what he has called the 'safety key' after watching videos of people sneezing and spitting into their hands then deliberately touching door handles and lift buttons.

Mr Vellayappan said the key can work on L-shaped and U-shaped door handles, and in places of high pedestrian traffic, such as traffic stops, tram and bus buttons, ATMs and lifts.

Thirty prototypes of the key were made, which have been circulated to Monash staff, while a further 10 copies were forwarded to a neighbouring hospital.
Mr Vellayappan used 3D printing to develop the tool, with the cost of production per key working out to be less than $1, including materials and manufacturing.

The engineering student has freely shared his creation with people around the world with access to 3D printers.

"It's important now for people across the world to have immediate access to tools that can help slow the spread of this virus. People's lives depend on any little innovation," Mr Vellayappan said.

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