Heart Defibrillator Energy Source

Induction year
Inducted individuals
Dr. Joel Ennis
John Gilbert
D. Haskell
Joseph Sevigny
Inducted organizations

Heart Defibrillator Energy SourceProper heart rhythms can often be reestablished by the sudden discharge of stored energy in this pulsed-power device which uses a capacitor originally developed for space-based lasers and accelerators. In the mid-1980's, the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization (BMDO) funded a company now named Maxwell Technologies to develop a high energy-density thin-film capacitor - a device that stores and discharges energy. Since then, derivatives of this technology are being applied in pulsed-power devices to purify water, sterilize medical products, preserve food, and power heart defibrillators. 

At present, it is estimated that fewer than one-third of ambulances is equipped with defibrillators and about 15% of fire department emergency response vehicles carry these life-saving devices. Equipping more emergency personnel with capacitor-based portable heart defibrillators would result in saving lives and is a goal of medical supply companies like Zoll Medical Corporation who are partnering with Maxwell Technologies.