Introducing CAR3D, the COVID-19 Rapid Response Innovation Project

Improving Europe’s capacity to produce Personal Protective Equipment

The challenge

The ongoing pandemic of COVID-19 is creating sanitary challenges like never seen before. Until there is a vaccine or effective treatment, the use of masks and other types of personal protective equipment (PPE), is the best way to limit the spread of the virus circulation. The challenge is to maintain the supply of masks, which are often not made for reuse, as well as other PPE, such as face shields.

Additive Manufacturing, leveraging technologies such as 3D printing, could help to meet the demand for masks and other equipment, particularly in the case of reusable masks. However, we are faced with stark disparities across Europe in the standards and varieties of PPE and the coordination of regulatory certification.


The solution

The European edge in additive manufacturing and its short-term reconfiguration potential seems to be a promising solution to the current crisis. Several PPEs solutions have been proposed by 3D Printing sectors. However, these solutions need urgent improvements (ergonomics, breathability and skin contact). Additionally, none of them has been certified for medical use and coordination between initiatives is laking. This project aims to identify existing solutions and create reference designs for sanitary materials that comply with all the quality and safety requirements. In addition, coordination will be set up by creating a reference platform for a better response to future crises, with design, contacts and supply chains already in place.

A group of partners will work to design, develop and validate reusable masks that comply with EU specifications, making that design available for replication around Europe. The masks will meet quality standards in areas such as ergonomics, breathability and comfortable skin contact. The partners will also seek to design face shields that meet EU standards. The PPE created through this project will not receive a proprietary patent, and the digital designs will be shared widely, so that local Additive Manufacturers all over Europe can engage in production of high quality, reusable masks and face shields.


Expected impact

The immediate aims of the project are to reduce the pressure of the procurement of PPE by ensuring a greater supply of products that meet EU standards are widely available. Increased production will also reduce dependence on suppliers from outside Europe, as well as the use of PPE that does not meet European quality standards. Involving Additive Manufacturing suppliers means the current demand can be met without the need to scale up a new, dedicated industry, and it establishes a network of suppliers who can be called on in other emergencies.

Consortium

CIM UPC

CIM UPC

CIM UPC is the UPC’s world leading Technology Center in Additive Manufacturing. We will add value to society by generating technology and training the best professionals for Industry 4.0. We are promoting our own lines of research in 3D printing with the aim of channeling the great potential of the UPC in this area and the knowledge that we generate, convert into industrial added value.
Sant Joan de Déu Hospital

Sant Joan de Déu Hospital

End-user and project coordinator. One of the most important pediatric and women’s health centers in the world. Our care is based on the multidisciplinary work of our professionals.  Our goal is not only to promote and encourage the training of our professionals in order to improve the health of our patients and the community, but also to advance scientific and human knowledge. 
BCN3D Technologies

BCN3D Technologies

It's one of the leading 3D printer manufacturers in the world. Based in Barcelona, we firmly believe in delivering the best quality tools to both professionals and industry level users. We want to give the best tool possible to those who are going to change how things are made in the future.  We work for combining our expertise with groundbreaking ideas to create change.
University of Barcelona

University of Barcelona

University of Barcelona is widely considered to be one of the most prestigious universities outside the English-speaking world.  It's the principal centre of university research in Spain and has become a European benchmark for research activity. Grup Barcelona de... is a research group of university professors, prestigious professionals and students who develop research projects in typography and design.
Business to ideas

Business to ideas

Business to Ideas (B2Ideas) aims to improve the interactions between the professional sphere and the creative potential of higher education. Students from "grandes écoles" and universities supervised by teachers, in France and abroad, are competing to meet the needs of companies, administrations, associations or similar, researchers or individuals.

Acknowledgments

Business to ideas

Business to ideas

Business to Ideas (B2Ideas) aims to improve the interactions between the professional sphere and the creative potential of higher education. Students from "grandes écoles" and universities supervised by teachers, in France and abroad, are competing to meet the needs of companies, administrations, associations or similar, researchers or individuals.
UPC

UPC

The Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya · BarcelonaTech (UPC) is a public institution of research and higher education in the fields of engineering, architecture, sciences and technology, and one of the leading technical universities in Europe. The UPC has a high graduate employment rate: 93% of its graduates are in work and 76% find a job in under three months. It is ranked in the main international rankings.
University of Nottingham

University of Nottingham

University of Nottingham is a Russell Group university with a worldwide reputation for teaching and research, ranked among the best in the world. With campuses in the UK, China and Malaysia, the university is home to more than 47,500 students from more than 150 countries. The university offers a global experience for all and supports international students with courses and specialized guidance.

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