• Braskem supports companies and research centers in 3D Printing for the production of face-shield masks for professionals of the public health network

    DATE: 07/22/2020

    Published by: Braskem

    3D printing, one of the pillars of the 4.0 industry, has been instrumental in saving lives during the new coronavirus pandemic. In Brazil, the speed and especially the low cost of production processes are already helping in the production of items such as protective masks and lung ventilators prototypes. As a reference in this segment in the country, Braskem donated 120 plastic filament reels for this purpose and is supporting the work of twelve 3D printing research centers in the States of Bahia, Rio de Janeiro, Rio Grande do Sul and São Paulo.

    The polypropylene (PP) filament, produced by Braskem for use in 3D printers, is being used to manufacture stems for approximately five thousand face shield masks, which will be distributed free of charge to health professionals who work in public hospitals in the respective regions of the research centers. In Bahia, the product was donated to the Department of Science and Technology of the State of Bahia, which redistributed it to seven SENAI technology centers of the State; in Rio de Janeiro, the initiative have benefited the 3D printing research center of the Pontifícia Universidade Católica (PUC-RJ); in Rio Grande do Sul, the Parque Científico e Tecnológico (Tecnopuc) of PUC-RS and the Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), coordinated by the Brothers in Arms group; in São Paulo, the material was donated to 3D Criar and Inkubetech, which support the Hígia Project.

    Besides donating raw material, Braskem’s specialized 3D printing teams are also remotely supporting the research centers in the operation of this new raw material used for 3D printing of parts. “Although 3D printing is not new in Brazil, some technologies are still under development and polypropylene filament is still little known to the industry. In this sense, Braskem also collaborates for the development of new technologies and technical support for this segment to advance in Brazil,” explains Fabio Lamon, leader of Braskem’s Innovation and Technology for Additive Manufacturing.

    The polypropylene filaments for 3D printing donated are produced at Braskem and partner companies in Rio Grande do Sul. According to the company, the donation, besides contributing to the protection from the new coronavirus, is an opportunity to help develop the additive manufacturing industry in Brazil and also reinforce the importance of the plastic chain in areas such as health.

    “At the moment we are supplying hundreds of Brazilian companies with inputs for the manufacture of hospital products such as surgical masks, syringes, serum bags and protective equipment for doctors and nurses. Additive manufacturing comes to add technology in the manufacture of essential items to face this pandemic together and collaboratively,” concludes Lamon.

    Braskem members are also producing face shield mask components
    At Braskem, the examples of solidarity in the prevention of covid-19 go beyond the partnerships the company has made. Operators Gabrielly Farias and Leonardo Oliveira, from the PVC 2 AL industrial unit in Maceió (AL), have already printed stems to manufacture almost 200 protective masks for public health network professionals in the region. They are part of the 3D Saves project, a network of volunteers engaged in the production of equipment for use in state and local hospitals in Alagoas.

    Leonardo Oliveira says he is happy to have the opportunity to contribute to society and to those in need. “I have discovered this campaign on a social network, I suddenly found myself excited to participate, to know that I could make a difference. We use an instrument to which few have access, especially here in our State, so being able to help is priceless”.

    Gabrielly Oliveira recalls that the 3D printer was acquired for personal use: “We never have imagined we’d be doing this today, but leaving aside personal aspirations to do community work is more rewarding than anything else.

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