More than 600 3D printers have answered Britain’s call to arms and started to produce thousands of face visors for the
The masks, which protect doctors and nurses against
It comes after several hospitals on the frontline of the outbreak reportedly ran out of face masks and basic protective equipment last weekend, prompting health authorities to deliver thousands more masks and items of protective clothing.
Hundreds of 3D printers have been turned to the task of producing face visors. Pictured above are workers at the Royal Mint, Wales, which has also switched to making the masks
The project saw hundreds of sign ups following its launch on Monday. Pictured above is a student printing a face visor using a machine in Zaragoza, Spain
The project, known as 3DCrowdUK, enlists 3D printer owners in the struggle against COVID-19 by asking them to build essential equipment for the NHS.
‘We are basically getting all the people around the country who have 3D printers and we’re enlisting them in our project to create face shields for the NHS,’ said digital artist and 3D printer owner Seb Lee-Delisle.
‘We literally set it up on Monday and by now we have got hundreds and hundreds of people involved.’
The masks are easy to assemble. Once the 3D printers have created the headband, a plastic film is placed on the front and elastic attached the back to hold it in place.
Companies across the UK have been offering their premises as assembly and distribution hubs for the shields. The Royal Mint has also switched from making coins to building face visors for the NHS.
The Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow has also started building face visors (pictured)
A face visor printed at the Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow is shown above
The UK recorded a further 2,546 cases of coronavirus today, taking the total to 17,089
‘The people that are making the 3D parts bag them up and send them to the closest hub and at the hub they go ahead and manufacture them, put the plastic sheets on the front and the elastic and deliver them to the people that desperately need it,’ Mr Lee-Delisle said.
‘It’s a very quick, fast, cost-effective way to get protective gear into the hands of our NHS workers.’
Stephen Stewart, the head of computing at Lochaber High School in the west of Scotland, said he started printing the face shields after he heard that his local hospital was in urgent need of visors to protect its medical workers from the virus.
‘Currently it takes two hours to print one but I am hoping to reduce that now the design is perfected,’ he said.
‘Since starting yesterday I have printed five from one printer and dropped them in to the Belford Hospital.’
The design for the masks was supplied by Josef Prusa, a 3D printer based in the Czech Republic.
The volunteers have been supplying their own materials to produce the shields. The project has also been collecting donations through crowd funding.
Incredible images from inside the ExCel Centre show construction work to transform the exhibition centre into London’s emergency coronavirus hospital is underway
Ambulances are seen outside the Excel Centre, London, while it is being prepared to become the NHS Nightingale Hospital, as the capital prepares for a ‘tsunami’ of patients
Other medical staff carried out ‘dummy runs’, wheeling a model of a fake patient on a trolley into the ExCel exhibition centre on Saturday morning
3D printers in Italy have also saved ten patients lives after they produced a replacement valve for a ventilator machine, allowing it to remain operational.
The UK reported a further 2,546 cases of coronavirus this afternoon. The Department of Health also said 1,019 people have died from the virus.
Stunning images of the UK’s first NHS Nightingale hospital at London’s ExCel Centre were published by No10 Downing Street today.
The exhibition space has been fitted out with 4,000 beds along with ventilators and other key equipment for the battle against the deadly disease.
NHS staff at Northwick Park hospital were forced to wear bin liners on their heads last weekend, due to an alleged equipment shortage.
A nurse at another major London hospital told MailOnline she had been forced to head to a hardware store to buy aprons, after the centre ran out.