Additive Instruments will receive a grant from the Royal Academy of Engineering and Innovate UK to make injection moulded respirator masks.
The company is a spinout from the Biomechanics research group in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, and it was established earlier this year to use additive manufacture to make orthopaedic instruments. After the COVID-19 crisis, the company has repurposed to manufacture FFP3 face masks through injection moulding. FFP3 provides the best protection against airborne particles, including the COVID-19 virus.
The Innovate UK grant of £40 million will be shared between over 800 companies developing new projects and services designed to boost economic recovery from the impact of COVID-19. The money is part of the £1.25 billion coronavirus package first announced by the Chancellor Rishi Sunak to help UK businesses driving innovation and development.
Dr Jonathan Jeffers from the Biomechanics group explains: "FFP3 respirator masks offer excellent respiratory protection, better than surgical masks or FFP1/2 designs. Injection moulding means we can make thousands a day. The tooling was designed and manufactured in a week, all here in the UK."
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