The CAR3D project, together with other four Catalan projects fighting against the impact of the pandemic, receive finance from the European Union. Last December, the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) distributed 60 million euros between 207 projects and, from those planning to contribute to the response against the pandemic, five involve the participation of Catalan businesses and institutions. The European Commissioner for Research, Mariya Gabriel, highlighted that innovation will play a key role in the fight against coronavirus.

The CAR3D project is an initiative to design, develop and validate masks and face shields made by 3D printing and other manufacturing systems. This project is promoted by the Sant Joan de Déu Hospital, CIM UPC, BCN3D and UB.

Arnau Valls, engineer from the department of innovation of Hospital Sant Joan de Déu, explains that during the beginning of the pandemic they distributed more than 5,000 PPE to health centres, and now they want to “use the acquired knowledge to generate a more resistant protective equipment that is validated for clinical use”. There is also a platform underway to link supply and demand and to provide “Europe with another alternative to local production, coordinated and validated for when supply chains are cut off, or before if there are available nearby solutions”. Not only will this platform help mitigate the health crisis, but also its economic and social impact, since its intention is to revitalise the local economy.

The other projects with European finance are #SOMLALLET, having managed to save over 10,000 litres of milk and turning it into cheese; the Digital Control Centre for COVID-19 in Hospital Clínic, having helped reduce the hospital’s mortality rates thanks to artificial intelligence and the mobile App Future Mob, which proposes mobility challenges to encourage sustainable alternatives.

Source: “Innovació contra la Covid” in El Punt Avui, Laia Bruguera

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