Particle Episode 1: Dr. Aisen Caro Chacin and Dr. Chris Zahner

Dr. Aisen Caro Chacin and Dr. Chris Zahner work together at the University of Texas Medical Branch at the Maker HEALTH SPACE, a medical device prototyping Lab. Together they have made an innovative design for ventilators - creating them out of standard medical supplies and Arduinos, for simple and inexpensive use and distribution all over the world.

Aisen is a long time member of the UCLA Art Sci collective: as a student of Victoria Vesna, collaborator and teacher in the Sci Art summer institute. We are very proud of her work as she truly exemplifies how media artists and scientists coming together can help in urgent situations such as we are facing now with COVID 19.

Learn More about The Maker HEALTH SPACE


Dr. Aisen Caro Chacin holds a BFA in Sculpture from the University of Houston (UH), an MFA in Design and Technology from Parsons in NYC, and a Ph.D. in Human Informatics from the University of Tsukuba, Japan.

Her work lies within the intersecting fields of art, science, and technology, focusing on the design and development of human-computer interfaces, medical devices, and Assistive Device Art. Her research delves into sensory substitution, human-echolocation, haptics, modeling bronchoscopes, emergency ventilation equipment, sample tracking, materializing patient data for surgical procedures, and adaptive fashion.

Currently, she is a medical device designer and developer at the University of Texas Medical Branch, an Adjunct Professor of New Media Art at UH, and chairs LASER Houston, a series of art and science talks sponsored by Leonardo, IAST and Transart Foundation for Art and Anthropology.


Dr. Christopher Zahner is a clinical pathologist in the Department of Pathology at the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB). Prior to medical school (Texas Tech Health Sciences Center) and residency (UTMB), he was a mechanical engineer (BS Mechanical Engineering from the University of Florida) for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) supporting the International Space Station (ISS) as an Operations Support Officer (OSO) and Mission Evaluation Room Life Support and Integration (MERLIN) officer.

Dr. Zahner’s basic science research is focused on medical devices and resulted in hardware development, grants, and patents in the fields of microbial growth, balance, acoustics, and sample processing, along with prototype hardware in ventilation, sample tracking, and hand hygiene.