Open Source PAPR

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  • The formal name is "CAPR" or Controlled-Air Purifying Respirator
  • A Device Mainly Used as a filtered/safe air supply in enviroments where there IS oxygen, and the user can breath normally (as in lung function isn't impaired), but a chemical/biological/particulate hazard exists/is expected
  • Is essentially a forced air filter, with a hose leading to a mask
  • Typically is a belt with the power/controls/filter, then a tube to a mask/hood
  • A Similar "box" can feed a Positive Pressure Personnel Suit , a type of hazmat suit for bio uses (ie doesn't protect against heat (like firefighting "bunker suits" , or from certain liquids and/or radiation like other Hazmat suits
  • Many DIY devices are essentially adapted CPAP machines


  • Hood and hose are discarded after each use - [1]
  • PAPR and general PPE protocols - [2]
  • Used in Biosaftey Levels 3 and 4 (Medical, Bioscience, etc)
  • Also useful for welding with large amounts of flux in non well ventilated spaces etc

Industry Standards



Existing Open Source Devices


  • Joshua Pearce in HardwareX - [3]
  • WASP version - [4]
  • Snorkeling masks turned to respirators - [5]


Basic Design


  • Either a backpack, like in the video, or a 3d printed "shell"

Power Supply

  • The associated electronics
  • Preferabbly something swappable / Hot Swappable either (For Emergency need (ie we need something that "just works" NOW this may be a lesser need, even just throw a 9/12v battery in the backpack etc)
    • A OTS System such as RYOBI 18V etc
    • OSE System with the batteries in a 3d Printed shell with inserted metal contacts


  • Should be simple enough to use an arduino
  • Indicators of flow and status MAY be needed to reach proper capability (if it fails you NEED to know if in a "Hot Zone")

Blower Fan

  • Something with X M^3/H airflow (without filter) and Y M^3/H airflow (with filter)
  • Either OTS or a 3d printed fan with ots motor, or fully open source

Filter Mount

  • A Standard mount, and 3d Printed adapters for different cartriges


  • Some sort of standard cartrige
  • Contractor grade face mask cartriges should work for welding
  • Due to the "END IS NEAR" supplies and the surplus military supplies, CBRN grade CAN be used, but is overkill and thus more expensive than need be in most applications
  • Standard Biosaftey cartrige?

See Also

Useful Links