Italian carmaker Ferrari has started to produce respirator valves and fittings for protective masks at its Maranello plant as one of its initiatives in support of health workers treating coronavirus patients.
Italy has been one of the worst affected countries, with over 22 000 deaths reported and close to 170 000 cases of Covid-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.
The department where car prototypes are usually built is producing these thermoplastic components using additive manufacturing technology.
Several hundred items to be produced
Some valves have been developed by Mares, a diving equipment manufacturer, tailor-made to fit their masks so as to create emergency masks to assist patients suffering from respiratory failure.
The logistics of the project were handled by Nuovamacut Gruppo TeamSystem, who also helped with the research of the different companies who contributed to the success of the project.
Other fittings are being supplied to Solid Energy, who will use them to transform Decathlon snorkel masks into aids to protect healthcare workers exposed to infection.
In the next few days, Ferrari plans to manufacture several hundred items of equipment that are already being distributed by some of the companies involved, with the coordination of the Italian Civil Protection, to various Italian hospitals including those in Bergamo, Genoa, Modena, and Sassuolo as well as to health workers in the town of Medicina, near Bologna.