How 3D Printing Helps Us in Battling with COVID-19?

At this critical stage when COVID-19 is starting to impact all industries and economy badly; where many countries are locking down leading to shortage of materials, manpower and production of medical devices that are needed in hospital and healthcare during this battle with COVID-19.

We can see many people coming forward to help one another and sharing resources to overcome this pandemic.

Let’s take a look of some of the 3D printed case studies of current applications.

Venturi Ventilator Value by Christian Fracassi & Isinnova Team

3D Printed in Italy on 3D Systems ProX 6100 in Medical Grade Nylon

Patients in Italy fighting the battle with COVID-19 require intensive care and oxygenation through the use of ventilators. With the increasing of cases everyday around the world, the venturi valves for ventilators are running low in supply at hospitals.

Although these venturi valves were printed in Italy using 3D Systems SLS ProX 6100 as a last-minute solution; there are more testing required to validate with newer open-source designs. During this period of testing, more alternative materials and technologies are taking into consideration for exploring to help the suitable material and technology for this application that are biocompatible and yet not reactive.

The 3D printed valves used at a hospital in Chiari, Italy was a clinical case. Using the traditional OEMs, the valves were not be able to be supply in such a short amount of time. Before 3D printed the valves, they need to reverse-engineered to get the model design, prototyped the valves, tested and printed in the span of 3 days on the SLS ProX 6100 with medical grade nylon.

3D Printed Face Shield

3D Printed Face Shield by Hong Kong Poly University

As face shields are widely used in hospitals to protect the healthcare Frontliner heroes, taking care of the COVID-19 patients, against bodily fluids which could carry infection. These face shields are very important and hospitals cannot afford to have shortage or out of stocks.

Hong Kong’s Polytechnic University designed and 3D printed the face shields for Hong Kong hospital workers. The face shield consists of a 3D printed frame that worn against the forehead which holds the plastic sheet covering the entire face.

3D Printed Face Shield

Making use of the existing face shield design available online, Prusa3D adjusted the design for easier and faster 3D printing where there will not have any supports required and they ensure quality control so that they can fit as many as possible onto a single print sheet.

3D Printed Swabs for COVID-19 Testing

3D Printed Swabs

Using the same material as Surgical Guide Resin, Formlabs is working with hospitals around the United States to 3D print swabs for COVID-19 testing.

Using 3D printing, it can rapidly provide hospitals with access to large quantities of these essential COVID-19 test kit with the help of mobilizing its community of users to deploy nearly 1,000 printers to quickly mass-produce.

Hands-Free Door Handle attachment

3D Printed Hands-Free Door Handle Attachment

As we all knew that door handles are subjected to have lots of physical contact unless we are using automated door with sensor that will open the door itself. The fear and risk of contacting the door handles are the transmission of coronavirus anywhere anytime.

The benefit of this door handle attachment allows us to pull down the handle using our forearm, the lever action, instead of our palm or fingers to open the door as we may forgot and touch our faces after that.

Materialise designed the assembly of the door handle come in 2 parts, that can be easily be 3D printed, that require 4 sets of screws and nuts to secure it.

3D Printed Hand Sanitizer Holder by Moath Abuaysha

3D Printed Hand Sanitizer Holder

What do you using do after contacting surfaces like opening the door, holding the poles, holding the handles?

We will sanitize our hands but where are the hand sanitizer usually place, for those hand sanitizers without the hook to hang on the bag?

We will put our “taint” hands into our bag to take out our hand sanitizer before we can cleanse our hands, right?

This 3D printed wrist clasp was designed to hold the bottle for easy access and with the minimum contact of touching the bottle, we can flip open the cap and pour it out.

We are glad and thankful for everyone participating and volunteering to give a helping hand during this critical stage of fighting with COVID-19 together. Wishing and hoping that we can overcome it as fast as possible.

You may contact Ginkgo3D or ECS Singapore for 3D Printing Services on your projects.


All images credits thanks to 3D Systems, 3D Printing Industry, Design News, Prusa Printers, South China Morning Post

The Ginkgo Press Team

The Ginkgo Press Team covers any news related to 3D Printing, which includes interviews, events and technology.