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India fights coronavirus: Govt unveils Aarogya Setu COVID-19 tracker app

New Delhi: The Union government has unveiled an app called Aarogya Setu designed to alert users if they have come in close proximity with any COVID-19 positive patient.

The app tracks through a Bluetooth and location-generated social graph.

It calculates the user’s risk of infection based on recency and proximity of COVID-19 patient.

“We understand the nature and sensitivity of the topic and have taken strong measures to ensure that your data is not compromised. Your data will be shared only with the Government of India. The app does not allow your name and number to be disclosed to the public at large at any time,” said the app.

The app is currently available on Google Play Store for download.

Released on Wednesday, the app has already been downloaded over 5,000 times.

To use the app, one needs switch on Bluetooth and location and set location sharing to “always”.

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The app’s alerts are accompanied by instructions on how to self-isolate and what to do in case you develop symptoms that may need help and support.

“With Aarogya Setu, you can protect yourself, your family and friends, and help our country in the effort to fight COVID-19,” according to the description of the app.

The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), on the other hand, has developed a bio suit to keep the medical, paramedical and other personnel engaged in combating COVID-19 safe from the deadly virus.

Scientists at various DRDO laboratories have prepared the suit with the help of the industry and subjected to rigorous testing for textile parameters as well as protection against synthetic blood.

DRDO used nanotechnology to develop the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) having specific type of fabric with coating.

The protection against synthetic blood exceeds the criteria defined for body suits by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

The DRDO is making all efforts to ensure that these suits are produced in large numbers and serve as robust line of defence for the medics, paramedics and other personnel in the frontline of combating COVID-19.

The industry is geared up for production of the suit in large quantities.

Kusumgarh Industries is producing the raw material, coating material, with the complete suit being manufactured with the help of another vendor. The current production capacity is 7,000 suits per day.

Another vendor is being brought in with experience in garment technology and efforts are on to ramp up the capacity to 15,000 suits per day.

The bio suit production in the country by DRDO industry partners and other industries are being hampered due to non-availability of seam sealing tapes.

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The DRDO has prepared a special sealant as an alternative to seam sealing tape based on the sealant used in submarine applications.

Presently, bio suits prepared using this glue for seam sealing by an industry partner has cleared test at Southern India Textile Research Association (SITRA) Coimbatore. This can be a gamechanger for the textile industry. The DRDO can mass produce this glue through industry to support the seam sealing activity by suit manufacturers.

(IANS)

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