“While there are many initiatives around the globe to encourage scientific collaboration, there is unfortunately little coordination among these teams.”
So says Frédéric Vacher, Head of Innovation for the 3DExperience Lab at Dassault Systèmes. Dassault created an online Open COVID-19 Community which is designed to be a place where engineers, designers and manufacturers worldwide can work together on innovative solutions during the pandemic and stay in touch throughout the process.“The goal is to expedite the design and manufacturing processes of medical parts and equipment,” says Vacher. “Since the launch of the Open COVID-19 Community, we have already seen users create innovative solutions such as 3D-printed masks and ventilators. In one case Inali, a nonprofit in India, developed a smart ventilator in just eight days using resources from the Open COVID-19 Community. Using cloud-based digital applications such as Dassault Systèmes’ 3DExperience platform, Inali rapidly designed a 3D model of the smart ventilator, engineered it, simulated its function, and manufactured and validated a prototype.”
Perusing the Open COVID-19 Community recently, one could find over 100 projects including several devoted to making facemasks for infants, simulations of sneezing for use in optimizing face mask designs, a design for an antiseptic spray nozzle, a full-body disinfection system for health care workers using 3D-printed nozzles, and even a design for a cardboard hospital bed. Also on the site was a 3D model of a 3D-printed visor attachment for baseball caps that can be utilized as personal protective equipment. Vacher says a local grocery store in Ontario is now using the design.
In addition to creating the Open COVID-19 Community, Dassault Systèmes is also offering a set of training and certification programs so engineers can enhance skills in areas such as design, engineering, simulation, manufacturing and production. For example, the company offers academic research groups involved in coronavirus-related studies a no-charge, six-month license to BIOVIA Discovery Studio to assist in the search for a vaccine.