From a product design perspective, this is a weirdly fascinating time. It’s during such times of adversity, that as humans, we seem to become more creative than ever, as fight or flight kicks in. Crisis’ in history have usually prompted significant, unprecedented and life changing evolution and innovation. Whether that is considering processes we use to do things, or indeed products we need to solve a problem; it might be something we didn’t have pre-crisis, or wasn’t significant or dominant before the proverbial hit the fan.
We’ve already seen some inspiring creations and dedicated product development, condensed into the tightest of time frames, to fulfil urgent and life saving situations, and to keep the economy moving and ensure people stay in touch. Here are some of our favourites at the time of writing.
These 3D printed ventilator valves were created by an Italian start-up, after a leading Italian journalist reached out to the local 3D printing community in Lombardy in an attempt to speed up the process of obtaining these critical valves to meet demand using reverse engineering.
Earlier we shared this fantastic link to Dyson’s new CoVent ventilator. Created in response to the Prime Ministers call for UK companies to help create more ventilators to ease the COVID-19 crisis in hospitals up and down the country. Dyson’s response was unusual in that they took just 10 days to create a new high specification ventilator. Dyson have been asked to build at least 15,000 of these lifesaving machines. Founder, James Dyson has committed to donating 1,000 of these to the UK and 4,000 abroad. Outstanding!
3D Printing specialists Isinnova have teamed up with sports giant Decathlon to help turn their scuba masks into ventilation masks, by adding a special 3D printed component named the Charlotte Valve. Isinnova have cleverly filed a patent for this component, whilst giving away the component, all in a bid to ensure that this life changing component cannot be sold for profit. Well done Decathlon!
The Virustatic Shield has been created as a response to the Coronavirus pandemic and is currently undergoing mass production in a bid to get to market as quickly as possible. Created by leading scientists this thin snood has been tested and proven to trap and kill 96% of viruses, including the Coronavirus. Take our money!!!
Italian architects have created this hospital concept which can be ‘bolted on’ to the main hospital itself. The repurposed container units can be used alone or connected by an inflatable structure to allow for multiple bed set up. Using biocontainment technology, these pod hospitals could be as quick to set up as a tent, but as safe as an isolation ward thanks to clever negative pressure systems.
This concept stage mobile protection pod provides the wearer with conditions perfect for retaining a sterile environment, using UV rays and heat to kill pathogens and sterilise the pod.
Whether or not you agree that a face mask is what you need to protect against the virus itself, there are is certainly a time and place for it, particularly across many professions, use of which, has increased dramatically in recent weeks. So much so, the trend inspired artist Danielle Baskin to create a face mask which allows you to print your face onto it. Why we hear you ask? So you can unlock your phone with facial recognition, obviously! What a concept!
This flat pack, easy to assemble desk, can be ordered for delivery and gets you up and running from home, quicker. Not only can you order this desk to order and build yourself, but if you cardboard and a laser cutter you can even download the files to create on your own. The product files for this quick and easy build-at-home desk have been made available on open source to ensure as many people as possible can benefit.
China have been utilising drones and self-driving robots as an extra and much safer ‘pair of hands’ during the Coronavirus pandemic. From grocery delivery to quarantine reinforcement, disinfecting anything from hospital rooms to streets, and even detecting the virus; these robots and drones are able to carry out tasks, limiting human contact with these situations and reducing risk for infection. Bravo China!
In a bit to quite simply just try to keep our hands off anything we don’t need to be touching, 3D printing experts Materialise have launched free design files, to allow the user to print hands free door openers, to try to reduce the risk of the spread of the Coronavirus, wherever we are!
What a plethora of outstanding innovation so far! Check back soon for more COVID-19 inspired designs – we’ll be keeping our eyes peeled, not touching our faces, and washing our hands!