Military Support NHS By 3D Printing PPE

UK Armed Forces engineers have been 3D printing vital PPE components for medical staff on the frontline of the COVID-19 crisis.

Engineers from the Royal Navy, Royal Air Force and the British Army are supporting medical staff dealing with the COVID-19 outbreak by 3D printing personal protective equipment (PPE) components.

Army engineers from Tidworth-based 22 Engineer Regiment have been producing face shield adapters, 24 hours a day for the past month.

They began producing the PPE components following an appeal from 3DCrowd UK, a volunteer organisation crowdsourcing 3D printer owners to produce PPE components.

The initiative is funded through the Army’s Innovation Fund, which helped the team find a larger 3D printer to expand the capacity of the project.

Engineers from across the services have been 3D printing vital components necessary for PPE (Picture: MOD).

At HMNB Devonport, Engineer Naval Reservists have been working with other dockyard agencies to make medical visor headbands using their 3D printers.

RAF Odiham’s Chinook Support Centre (CSC), part of the Defence Equipment & Support Chinook delivery team, have developed clips that make masks more comfortable when worn for a long time.

They are distributing them via team members’ family contacts within the NHS.

Defence minister Jeremy Quin praised the efforts made across the services to contribute: "Our armed forces are renowned for their innovative approaches to problem-solving.

"I am proud that included among the many ways personnel are supporting our NHS is the application of their skills to produce items to be used by frontline workers across the UK."

Cover image: MOD.