Production AV is harnessing the power of 3D printing technology to produce Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for key workers during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The U.K.-based company recently invested in 3D printing kit for its core AV business, creating parts to “solve niggles” and finesse its delivery of AV solutions. When the Coronavirus crisis took hold Production AV’s founder, Pete McCrea, decided to put it to good use.
McCrea and his team are now helping to make various designs of protective face masks, which are being distributed to the U.K.'s National Health Service (NHS) frontline staff and those in other sectors like food service and medicine delivery.
“Like so many in our industry, we’d seen the work tap literally turned off and our AV project diary erased for the foreseeable future,” McCrea said. “With a large warehouse and a skilled team ready to help, we decided to adapt to assist with the fight against this devastating virus. It's important to us to help support our local community and its key workers while they're in such a pressured period.”
McCrea added that the inspiration to 3D print PPE came from Duncan Coombe of London-based lighting hire and event production company DCLX, who is leading a group of companies in the production efforts.
“We were really impressed by Duncan’s dedication and the team they've built,” McCrea said. “They’re churning out high quantities of kit both on their 3D printers and laser cutters and we are happy to feed in with our kit and expertise.”
In addition to the production line, Production AV is also assisting with logistics for a local group making hospital scrubs for various organizations. The company is also running the processing power of its media servers and show laptops 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to contribute to the ‘Folding@Home’ initiative, which shares computing power around the world to research the make-up of COVID-19 and work towards a vaccine.
“We are confident that we will weather this storm and come out stronger—we're using the time to streamline our processes and learn new skills and invest in our people as best we can,” concluded McCrea.