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Germany's DLR uses its 3D printers to produce PPP

Apr '20
Pic: Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt; DLR
Pic: Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt; DLR
Amidst Coronavirus crisis, the German Aerospace Centre (DLR) has successfully converted its 3D printers, which are usually used to produce models for aerospace research, to manufacture medical protective equipment. The step was taken after a request from the European Commission for assistance in the production of urgently needed medical equipment.

The tests have been carried out to show the success of the change. The most powerful printers at DLR can produce up to 10 protective masks or 15 valves for ventilators per day. By networking institutes and facilities, it will be possible to produce larger quantities.

The certification and approval of the products produced by DLR for medical use is in progress. Systemhaus Technik is making its experience in converting 3D printers available to other scientific institutions.

The request specifically addressed the production of protective masks and valves for respirators using 3D printing. Despite the absence of technical specifications (CAD data), DLR’s Systemhaus Technik and its other sources of engineering expertise have succeeded in conducting tests with components based on freely available templates and with plastics approved for use in the medical sector. The rubber-like materials selected for the masks ensure a good fit and high user comfort.

DLR’s 3D printer capabilities are currently being assessed. The performance varies, depending on the type of printer. For example, DLR has printers which, like an automatic hot glue gun, liquefy plastic granulate and print it in layers one on top of another. In others, liquid plastic is hardened using ultraviolet light.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk (SV)

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