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Based on the green outskirts of Cambridge, Cambridge Design Partnership (CDP) has recently expanded its footprint to add a large purpose built facility to its converted barn next door.

With both buildings housing 75 staff – ranging from graphic and user interface designers, to CAD designers and electrical engineers – there’s a lot going on, yet despite that, much of it is hidden from view.

On the ground floor of the new building are custom designed prototyping workshops, including separate rooms for 3D printing, electronics work, and a one-way mirror consumer insight testing space.

The upper floor is formed of separate meeting rooms, connected by an ‘innovation wall’ that transitions through the range of work CDP has produced over the past 20 years. With the majority of CDP’s clients working in either the medical or consumer products, there is a wide array of recognisable products. From a gleaming showroom-ready prototype of an ice cream dispenser, to a cardboard mockup of a popular vacuum cleaner, it makes it easy to get an idea of the scale of the clients that the company works with.

Latest designs

Although most projects remain firmly under the cloak of client confidentiality, the work that CDP is allowed to break cover on is still eye-catching.

The First Response Monitor (FRM) is one of its latest products, and a device demonstrating both the company’s consumer and healthcare design knowledge.

The FRM clips onto a person’s nose, providing at-a-glance displays of both heart and respiratory rates. The data can be collected from multiple monitors and displayed live on a single mobile device.

Initially the design began as part of a brief to create an integrated patient monitor for the Ministry of Defence, which wanted a product that could measure everything you could possibly need to know about a patient: blood pressure, temperature, heart rate, breathing rate, and heart rhythm. Furthermore, it wanted it all in a compact form to give to frontline paramedics for use at point of injury while waiting for medical evacuation.

Having designed a winning concept for the pitch – a slightly cumbersome suitcase-sized unit that ticked all the MOD’s boxes – the team at CDP reverted back to the initial brief to challenge what was being asked. Click here to read the full article...

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