In our 3D Universe Untethered series, we get to hear from people across all different industries. But the benefits of digital fabrication go beyond industry – and sometimes, these technologies can enable motivated groups of individuals to come up with solutions when larger organizations either cannot or will not do so.
We think we can all agree that 2020 was quite a year! Among the many impacts of the COVID pandemic was the disruption of supply chains, resulting in shortages of many products, including Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
To address this challenge, a group of volunteers came together in March of 2020 to collaboratively develop a number of open-source mask designs that can be produced using affordable digital fabrication technologies (i.e. 3D printers, laser cutters, and desktop vacuum formers). This group eventually became known as the BE Mask team (the “BE” stands for Buffalo and e-NABLE, representing the two primary communities that joined forces for this initiative). And if you head over to their website at bemask.org, you’ll find lots more information about this work.
Members of the team come from local hospitals, universities, and industrial manufacturing. Contributors include engineers, IT analysts, researchers, designers, health and safety administrators, and clinicians from immunopathology, biomedical informatics, dentistry, orthology, and anatomy. Specialists in 3D printing from across the world have also joined the cause to offer insights and learn from their model.
Join us in this episode of 3D Universe untethered as we chat with some of the BE Mask team, learn about the different open-source designs, the history of this project, the struggles through the design processes, how the e-NABLE Community got involved, and much more!
Click on the video below to watch the panel discussion and demonstrations or listen to our podcast to hear all about this project.
BE Mask Team and the Development of Open-Source Mask Solutions | Video
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Podcast Link | Episode 20
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