QUB producing face masks to donate to NHS

  • Academic researchers at Queen’s University Belfast (QUB) are designing protective shield masks using a 3D printer and donating them to the NHS in the fight against the coronavirus.

    Dr Eneko Larrañeta, Dr Juan Dominguez-Robles and Dr Dimitrios Lamprou from the School of Pharmacy have modified designs developed by a group of Spanish engineers, to help meet the demands of the healthcare staff across the Belfast Trust.

    The 3D printer is normally used to manufacture a range of drug delivery systems and medical devices including catheters, microneedles and tablets.

    Dr Lamprou said: “Everyone is thinking how they can help in this crisis situation.

    “We have already produced over twenty masks this week, which we are delivering to the Belfast Trust . The masks can be produced relatively low-cost and we are providing these as a donation to the NHS in these crucial times.”

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    The team plan to continue producing the face shields, and ask that others with 3D printers do the same in order to increase supplies.

    Professor Brian Falzon, from the School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering is also pursuing high volume production of face shields using laser cutting technology of polymer sheeting.

    He said: “Simplicity is at the heart of these designs for ease of manufacture and assembly. We now have a few prototypes ready for field testing. We believe that we have the capacity to produce these at a rate of between 100 and 200 per day.”

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    Niamh is a Sync NI writer with a previous background of working in FinTech and financial crime. She has a special interest in sports and emerging technologies. To connect with Niamh, feel free to send her an email or connect on Twitter.

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