The COVID-19 pandemic is an extremely challenging situation. Faced with this global crisis, it has been amazing to see how people and companies around the world have responded, through many different approaches. The span across industries, from medical, repair and logistics, to engineering, 3D Printing and manufacturing, have all really shown the benefit of communication, leadership and teamwork. On the engineering and manufacturing side, there has been a focus on building personal protection equipment (PPE), either from scratch or retrofitting full face snorkeling masks with adaptors to accept N95 filter cartridges. Ventilators (Minimum Viable Product versions) have been a main focus as well, to help address the expected peak influx of patients who will need help breathing.
During this sprint to find solutions, it is critical to remember the first principles in manufacturing. We always start with the Manufacturing Triangle: Cost, Quality and Schedule. In the case of COVID-19, cost is (for once) not the primary driving factor due to the importance of finding critical solutions quickly and financial support of very generous donors. Schedule and Quality are where we need to focus.
We are energized to see so many people from all disciplines dive in and use their skills to help others during this challenging time. It’s an opportunity for us to come together and solve a critical global problem.
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