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Prairie View A&M Fabrication Center using 3D printers to produce facial shields for medical workers

Staff and 3 students plan to produce 1,000 facial shields per week using 3D printer technology.
Credit: wikipedia

PRAIRIE VIEW, Texas — Prairie View A&M's Fabrication Design Center is a new facility for the School of Architecture. But, for the moment they're using it for medical workers.

Three students and two staff members in the Prairie View Fabrication Design Center (Fab Center) are turning their desire to help others during the coronavirus pandemic into a life-saving reality.

They're using the 3D printers in the Fab Center to produce facial shields for medical workers. 

A face shield is a type of personal protective equipment used to protect the wearer's entire face from hazards such as flying objects and road debris, chemical splashes, or potentially infectious materials.

Assistant Professor Stephen Song, Director of the Fab Center, said while he, the center manager, two graduate students, and an undergraduate were working remotely, they started making computer simulations last week. 

This week, they conducted 3D test prints that turned out successfully. The 3D printer builds a three-dimensional object from a computer-aided design model, usually by successively adding material layer by layer.

“We have the capability of producing about 100 face shields per day," said Song. "We will start mass production as of today and will get a couple of other student workers to help. We currently have materials in our inventory to produce 400 face shields by the end of the week, but we ordered more materials from the manufacturer and hope to get it in a few days to produce as many as 1000 or more.”

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