Aston Martin have been supporting the Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC) with the manufacture and delivery of the highly sought-after Aerosol Generating Procedure (AGP) Shield that is currently being offered to hospitals around the UK.
Using the British brands first ever SUV, DBX, Aston Martin has been able to help the MTC transport materials between facilities and deliver fully built AGP Shields to hospitals across the UK. To date, over one hundred AGP Shields have been delivered with their remarkable support, with ongoing future activities planned.
Aston Martin is currently utilising state of the art cutting machines at their Gaydon facility to cut out the silicone components that are used during the assembly of the shield, which is designed to minimise the risk of exposure to COVID-19 for frontline NHS staff. These advances will further aid the speed of production and overall ability to meet NHS demand.
Aston Martin Lagonda President and Group Chief Executive, Andy Palmer, said: “We are delighted to be able to help frontline NHS workers and hospitals around the country in their ongoing challenge to protect us from COVID-19. To be able to utilise the first DBX models to deliver the much needed AGP Shields has made everybody at Aston Martin very proud.”
Danny McGee, Chief Engineer at the MTC, said “It’s been fantastic to have Aston Martin supporting the AGP Shield project, delivering much needed materials to the MTC facility, and critically getting the fully built, and much needed, units to hospitals.”
He added “This project has shown how quickly the MTC can provide innovation in manufacturing whilst proving that agility and speed can still be achieved. The MTC’s state-of-the-art facility and expert technology engineers make this whole process easier.”
The AGP Shield project began in response to the COVID-19 pandemic to protect frontline healthcare workers around the world. The idea for the shield came from Dr Ian Renfrew, Consultant Interventional Radiologist at BARTS, alongside Dr Paolo Perella, Anaesthetic Registrar at Royal London Hospital, and colleagues, who were facing a number of challenges when undertaking operative procedures on COVID-19 patients in full surgical Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
MTC engineers, working in collaboration with Rolls-Royce, and supported by Innovate UK, have prototyped, developed and seen operational a fast make AGP Shield for use with ventilators. Wider applications for the shield have also been identified, further aiding the safety of front-line medical staff.
Commenting on the project, Dr Ian Renfrew said: “Having identified a possible solution to protect staff and reduce environmental contamination whilst caring for COVID-19 patients, a rough sketch translated into a workable prototype in less than a week.
He added: “All the staff from the MTC and Rolls-Royce have been fully invested in willingly modifying this to a now scalable lightweight model that can save lives both in the UK and abroad. The altruism, dynamism and accessible behaviours of all have been incredible. This is truly multidisciplinary working and the best of human kindness.”
It is anticipated that the NHS may need several thousand of these shields, with the MTC set to manufacture the first batch of up to two hundred units, which can be quickly scaled up across multiple supply chains in order to meet higher demands.
Technical design packs are available as an open source download for the flat-pack version of the AGP Shield. This provides manufacturers free access to the files and allows hospitals around the world to get units produced locally for speed and efficiency. Design and build instructions, for both the fabricated and vacuum formed versions, are available under application only licence for manufacture. More information on the AGP Shield can be found by visiting www.the-mtc.org/covid19support
For further information on Aston Martin, please visit www.astonmartin.com
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