QinetiQ in Farnborough is using its expertise and equipment to support the local COVID-19 response and PPE requirements. The company has been producing and supplying face shields to hospitals, doctors’ surgery centers, nursing and care homes and ambulance services all over the country, including local Frimley Park Hospital and healthcare settings in the Fleet and Farnborough areas in England.
Investment and expansion of QinetiQ’s 3D printing capability across its U.K. sites enabled a suitable design to be created, which is in-line with the requirements of standard-issue face shields. The design includes the frame 3D printed in a stack, made of PLA (a biodegradable material), an A4 PVC binder folder cover as the visor; an elastic strap for adjustability around the head and a 10mm strip of neoprene where it sits on the user’s forehead to allow for greater comfort with extended use.
The team of QinetiQ employees have completed the process from start to finish; designing, producing, assembling and distributing face shields themselves, whilst adhering to social distancing and safe working practices. By the end of the first week the team had already produced 426 fully-assembled face shields, which were individually bagged and boxed and delivered. The team now aims to continue to work on producing them for as long as possible.
Around 1,500 face shields have been donated so far, with an aim of up to 2,000 to reach various settings as the work continues over the coming weeks.