An artificial heart using miniaturised space technology

An artificial heart containing miniaturised space technology will soon beat inside a person, having been approved for human trials in France. With heart disease killing over 100 million people in developed countries alone and the demand for transplants far exceeding donations, creating a totally artificial heart has been the holy grail of cardiovascular medicine for half a century. Brainchild of the visionary cardiac surgeon, Professor Alain Carpentier, the prosthetic is the result of 15 years of collaboration with aerospace giant Astrium, the space subsidiary of EADS. In 2008, with support from the French Government and investors, Prof. Carpentier founded the EADS spin-off company, Carmat, to complete the work. Their first completely artificial heart was produced in 2013. Fashioned in part from biological tissue and in part from miniature satellite equipment, the device combines the latest advances in medicine, biology, electronics and materials science to imitate a real heart.

Space in your heart
Technology Transfer
Philip Raitt; Cornelis Eldering