As pandemic headlines weigh heavily, more are looking to contribute what they can with the resources they have to help others in need. Collaborating talent with determination and capitalizing on in-house manufacturing prowess, Rajant is giving back with the production of face masks.
Applying the 3D printing knowledge Rajant uses to create fixtures for BreadCrumbs®, like the ES1 and DX2, a small team set about to construct protective face masks following the online protocols for “3D Printing Of Personal Protective Equipment And Repurposing Of Common Household Air Filters”. Rajant-produced masks cannot claim to be a replacement for N95 masks because filtration abilities have not been legally verified; however, they certainly afford the same level of protection as normal surgical masks, which fills a significant need for the general population.
The two 3D printers Rajant had on-hand, before COVID-19, quickly doubled to four, and orders for raw materials were put into process. Much of the detailed work is done not by machine but by human hands. Volunteers from Rajant’s extended family, like Laurie Barry and her 83-year-old father Gary, are carefully sanding and cleaning every single unit prior to boxing. The innovative spirit of the Rajant employee/volunteer team geared up quickly and production is now set at 24 masks per day. Once strapping material arrives, Rajant will begin shipping completed masks in bulk to those who have expressed interest.
When asked, “What do you find most meaningful in working on this effort?”, here are a few voices of Rajant’s good servants:
“Knowing that a mask could save someone’s life is a huge motivator for me.”
– Chris Barry, Manufacturing Test Engineer at Rajant Corporation
“I love working on a problem which is beneficial to anyone and everyone; we are all doing our best to help one another be healthy and safe.”
– Jim Croyle, Senior Hardware Engineer at Rajant Corporation
“It is hard to boil down what is most meaningful about working on this project, as it is but a small effort in a sea of very large, complex problems. I feel hopeful that our efforts can bring some light to a dark time, and I feel determined that we will see the results of this project improve people’s lives. I hope we can continue to get the word out about the ease of 3D printing PPE, and in doing so convince more people to donate equipment to the people who most need protection in this trying time.”
– Giana Schena, Ph.D. Candidate in Dr. Steve Houser’s lab at Temple University
“What I wanted for this project was to send a sign to our friends and neighbors and loved ones – the ones still out there in the world facing down this disease every day. I wanted them to know that – we see you. We are giving you the room you need to battle by staying at home, by doing our part to stop the spread, but that does not mean we do not want to actively help you in the battle. Here are whatever tools we have, take them. To me, this project is togetherness and collaboration in our new world of social distancing. It is hope in the darkness. Right now, it is not yet enough, we are still in the trenches, but we are not done trying.”
– Emma Murray, Ph.D. candidate in Dr. John Elrod’s lab at Temple University. 🖉