COVID-19 GLOBAL PANDEMIC THE ENGINEERING RESPONSE
rst 2,000 frames, which is 500 kits to build
emergency hospital beds, to be out the door by
Cambridge Precision is following the rules.
“Social distancing in use at CPL, keeping our staff
safe whilst busy making components for medical
equipment,” the company reports, complete with
photo (below). www.is.gd/ovuxon
Vixen CNC night-time check recorded. “Back in
work tonight, checking the machines making parts
for the unnamed coordinator for the UK
government ventilator consortium, proud to be a
part of the challenge.” www.is.gd/oyewap
As we approach the Easter weekend, The
Guardian reports (www.is.gd/ihowoh): “NHS is
scrambling to get foreign-made ventilators into
hospitals, so that there are enough available
ahead of the estimated peak in UK coronavirus
cases in around seven to 10 days’ time.” And a
report from Bloomberg.com
(www.is.gd/madolo) says: "The NHS expects to
receive 30 locally-made machines this week,
compared to 300 sourced from China over the
weekend they will subsequently be rejected."
Post Easter – ventilator deliveries start,
overwhelming demand fear passes
Tuesday, 14 April, Dyson provides a video update
(www.is.gd/niyavu) on the progress of its new design,
The CoVent. But a 10,000-unit UK order is not won.
VentilatorChallengeUK tweaked Penlon design
of cial approval announced on Thursday, 16 April,
with rst deliveries already en route.
"The rst shipment of #ventilators leaves Penlon
Ltd for the #NHS (top, next column) – thank you to
everyone up and down the country who has been
working to make this a reality. Every ventilator made
is a life potentially saved," a LinkedIn post of the
same date reads. www.is.gd/nayano
Production of the second VentilatorChallengeUK
device from Smiths (paraPAC) has been upped, but a
report in The Metro (www.is.gd/gulotu) of Tuesday,
14 April says that rst deliveries of consortium-made
units were only made over the Easter Bank Holiday
weekend. It also adds: "Of cials originally said a total
of 30,000 ventilators were needed to get through
the peak of the virus, but Matt Hancock later
reduced that number to 18,000. There are currently
10,000 across the country."
Spirax Sarco reports on 14 April
(www.is.gd/asequq) its support for the Mercedes-
AMG High Performance Powertrains/University
College London CPAP unit. In less than a week, the
rm completed a technical evaluation, wrote CNC
programs, produced rst samples, had those
approved, then commenced round-the-clock
production (including over the Easter weekend), to
meet the Tuesday morning supply deadline.
Peak hospital-reported deaths and new cases in
the UK both pass without a ventilator hiatus and
focus shifts more fully onto PPE supply problems.
April 28 – Government says (www.is.gd/xuzeno)
an additional 2,400 mechanical ventilators have
been made available to the NHS since the start of
the pandemic, with over 250 coming from the
VentilatorChallengeUK so far. The NHS has 10,900
mechanical invasive ventilators and 4,300 noninvasive
devices, it adds.
Support for four VentilatorChallengeUK devices
will end but capacity will be increased through:
procuring more ventilators from overseas; scaling
up the production of existing or modi ed designs;
and working to design and manufacture new
devices. Orders for 15,000 Penlon Prima ESO2
ventilators (VentilatorChallengeUK modi ed and
approved design) have been placed, while Smiths
paraPAC ventilators, an existing device, are also
being made as part of the VentilatorChallengeUK.
Scaled-up production of existing Breas Medical
devices, the Nippy 4+ & Vivo65, is ongoing, rst
units were expected during May. In addition, Zephyr
Plus, made by Babcock, and Gemini, made by OES
Medical, are subject to ongoing review.
Five other devices continue to be eligible for
support ahead of assessment in early May.
The way engineering and manufacturing have
stepped up during the Covid-19 pandemic has
been truly inspiring. As the UK’s largest publisher
of engineering titles, MA Business is determined
that this should never be forgotten. That’s why we
have brought together all of our engineering
brands to launch the Engineering Heroes
campaign, which will celebrate the people,
companies and technologies that have
contributed. MA Business will use Engineering
Heroes to showcase the ingenuity and dedication
behind this historic effort and ensure that
engineering’s vital role, both in the response to
this pandemic and in society more generally,
receives the recognition it deserves. Visit
www.engineeringheroes.co.uk to get involved.
Celebrating engineering’s role in fi ghting the Covid-19 pandemic www.engineeringheroes.co.uk Join the campaign!
20 May/June 2020 | www.machinery.co.uk | MachineryMagazine | @MachineryTweets