breathe easier with the aluminum universal respirator by daniel farmer breathe easier with the aluminum universal respirator by daniel farmer
jan 15, 2015

breathe easier with the aluminum universal respirator by daniel farmer

breathe easier with the aluminum universal respirator by daniel farmer
all images courtesy of daniel farmer




urbanization is on the rise, which in today’s society is having a profound effect on our respiratory health, where urban lifestyles are leading to poor air quality, health, and different types of diseases. to put the problem into context over 67,000 people die each year in the UK due to respiratory diseases and 235 million people in the world currently suffer from asthma. doctors, GP’s and health professionals will not cope with the increases, and the crucial treatments will not be readily available. as a result, daniel farmer has developed the ‘universal respirator’.

daniel farmer universal respirator designboom
back view showing a buddhism design language encasing the two vessels




‘as attitudes towards social behavior are changing and people’s modern lives become faster paced and technology centered, people need downtime to recuperate, revive and to find clarity to disconnect from a hyper connectivity existence,’ says farmer. ‘there are no emotional attachments or connections with current medical devices. users associate these devices with a bad stigma and find it a bad dependency. they are also often ashamed of using the devices and are often not on show. furthermore, the device is obtrusive and needs a design to bring tangibility and physical beauty to the everyday.’

daniel farmer universal respirator designboom
side of the device showing ribbed pattern that distorts the mind 




buddhist rituals and visceral organs sparked the approach to design the process of breathing. the ‘universal respirator’ is a salt cave for your home, offering a natural drug-free solution to divert from medical prescribed products, serving those users who wish to indulge in emotionally connected products and those who desire to enjoy a physical tangible experience.

daniel farmer universal respirator designboom
front view of the device mimicking the two lungs and the process of breathing




the product does not only mechanically reproduce the act of inhaling and exhaling, but also represents it formally. from the front, the shape mimics two lungs side by side. partially encased in polyurethane, the vessels consist of anodized aluminum and borosilicate glass. 

daniel farmer universal respirator designboom
(left) half of the ‘lung’ is casted around supporting the device 
(right) soft gentle curves and contrasting materials 




in order to operate the device, the cap must be taken off of the containers and filled with approximately 0.5 liters of water and one spoon of pharmaceutical salt. once the power is turned on, the flow of the drip valve can be controlled through an adjustable lever. when the blue LED light is lit, users are instructed to take out the mouthpiece and inhale for 5 to 10 minutes.

inner prototyped components 

daniel farmer universal respirator designboom
anodized aluminum cap 

daniel farmer universal respirator designboom
mouthpiece shows an expression of transportation of air

daniel farmer universal respirator designboom
detail of the foot 

daniel farmer universal respirator designboom
universal respirator views

daniel farmer universal respirator designboom
diagram of the product

daniel farmer universal respirator designboom
original concept sketch and idea that formed the project 



designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.  

have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.

comments policy
designboom's comment policy guidelines
generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

- please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
- please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
- please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
- please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
- please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
(there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
the best 100-200 entries too.)

a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.


a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

design news