Romar Ascends to Orbit with NASA Awarded Medical Technology

Romar is an industry leader in medical-grade silicone and medical device manufacturing. Our broad expertise includes advanced manufacturing, elastomers, precision molding and clean room manufacturing. We excel at first-class – and award-winning – industrial manufacturing solutions.

We’re delighted to once more be part of an award-winning program, as the manufacturing partner for Rapid Repair, a medical device developed by Southern Cross University’s Dr Rosemary Craig and Dr Nedeljka Rosic, with business partner Gerard Criss.

This innovative wound healing technology may soon be elevated into orbit, thanks to an incredible win at NASA’s global iTech competition.

Rapid repair wound dressing product

About Rapid Repair

Project leader Dr Rosemary Craig explained that the Rapid Repair wound dressing is a thin black silicone strip placed over a wound and held together by surgical tape. The benefit is that it can repair wounds in days, rather than weeks.

As described by Southern Cross University: “Rapid Repair projects a fine virtual skin scaffold into damaged skin so that molecules flowing into the wound align as they would in undamaged skin. This reduces the need for stitches, staples and glue in many clinical situations. To bridge a 1mm gap in damaged skin, it takes more than 4000 collagen molecules to align and connect.”

In human clinical trials held last year, Rapid Repair was used in conjunction with sutures. The healing rate meant that the team was able to remove stitches – normally in place for 10 to 14 days – within 24 hours.

The non-toxic, non-invasive device holds enormous potential to drastically reduce skin healing time (and lessen scarring) in both humans and animals.

Space shuttle launch in the open space over the Earth

Winning with NASA

NASA’S ITech is an initiative to uncover cutting edge technologies that have potential for use in NASA’s space exploration. The annual competition recognises three winners.

The award came after a final two days of pitching, plus interviews with a panel of NASA’s chief technology officers and US investors.

“NASA has requested us to send a sample to the International Space Station for astronauts to test in micro and zero gravity. And following this week’s announcement of Australia partnering with the NASA Artemis Accord, our technology could be on the mission where the first female astronaut walks on the moon in 2024,” said Dr Rosemary Craig.

The project has the support of the Australian Space Agency, which has plans to trial the dressing within the extreme polar conditions of the Australian Antarctic Division.

Next steps with Romar

With funding from the CSIRO’s ON Program, the next step is to undertake a new stage of human clinical trials and to complete a feasibility study for large-scale manufacturing, with a view to launching Rapid Repair on the market in March 2021.

Romar has come on as the manufacturing partner for the project, and we are looking forward to working with the team and contributing our scalable manufacturing expertise for this groundbreaking medical device.

Romar’s diverse capability in commercial manufacture has seen us explore several collaborations in medical, aerospace and industrial projects. If you have a project in need of a robust and innovative manufacturing solution, please contact us.