(BIVN) – The University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo is 3D printing reusable prototype medical equipment in case of a shortage during the COVID-19 pandemic on Hawaiʻi Island.
The UH Hilo computer science department was featured in a recent video news release, designing and printing personal protective equipment (PPE) prototypes, such as a reusable face shield design that minimizes fogging and uses minimal 3D print material.
In the event that Hawaiʻi Island health care facilities run low on PPE, UH Hilo says it is prepared to print the reusable supplies.
“It’s very versatile,” said Francis Cristobal of the UH-Hilo Computer Sciences faculty. “We don’t know if it’s going to be needed by the medical facilities but as we wait we can print a couple here and give it to people here to use for protection so it’s not a bad place to be.”
The computer science department has also partnered with numerous Hawaiʻi Island organizations with 3D printers to produce PPE if a shortage occurs, the university says. The collaborative effort could produce approximately 155 face shields a day.
The UH Hilo art department also created a N95 mask that is reusable after sterilization, the university says. The art professor spearheading the department’s prototype is operating the printer from his cell phone while he shelters in place with family in Indiana.