• Face shields to be donated to healthcare professionals fighting COVID-19
  • FEMA will direct initial shipment to Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center in Dallas

Chicago | April 10, 2020–Boeing today will deliver the first set of reusable 3D-printed face shields to support healthcare professionals working to stop the spread of COVID-19. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) accepted the initial shipment of 2,300 face shields this morning. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will deliver the shields to the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center in Dallas, Texas, which has been established as an alternate care site to treat patients with COVID-19.

Boeing is set to produce thousands more face shields per week, gradually increasing production output to meet the growing need for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) in the United States. Distribution of additional face shields will be coordinated with HHS and FEMA based on immediate needs. Boeing is producing face shields with additive manufacturing machines at company sites in:

  • St. Louis, Missouri
  • China Lake, El Segundo, and Huntington Beach, California
  • Puget Sound region of Washington state
  • Mesa, Arizona
  • Huntsville, Alabama
  • Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Charleston, South Carolina
  • San Antonio, Texas
  • Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Portland, Oregon

Boeing subsidiaries Argon ST in Smithfield, Pennsylvania, and Aurora Flight Sciences in Bridgeport, West Virginia, are also participating in this project.

Solvay, a long-time Boeing supplier, provided the clear film for the face shields. Another supplier, Trelleborg Sealing Solutions, donated the elastic used for the adjustable headband.

Face shield production and donations are part of a larger Boeing effort to leverage company and employee resources to aid with COVID-19 recovery and relief efforts. To date, the company has donated tens of thousands of units of PPE – including face masks, goggles, gloves, safety glasses and protective bodysuits – to support healthcare professionals battling COVID-19 in some of the hardest-hit locations in the United States.

Boeing has also offered use of its unique airlift capabilities, including the Boeing Dreamlifter, to help transport critical and urgently needed supplies to healthcare professionals. The company is coordinating closely with government officials on how best to provide airlift support.

“Boeing is proud to stand alongside many other great American companies in the fight against COVID-19, and we are dedicated to supporting our local communities, especially our frontline healthcare professionals, during this unprecedented time,” said Boeing President and CEO David Calhoun. “History has proven that Boeing is a company that rises to the toughest challenges with people who are second to none. Today, we continue that tradition, and we stand ready to assist the federal government’s response to this global pandemic.”

Boeing taps into additive manufacturing expertise and offers up Dreamlifter to help respond to COVID-19 crisis.

March 30, 2020–Boeing announced it is activating its additive manufacturing network to 3D-print face shields for health care workers, and is offering up the Dreamlifter to help respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Boeing employees will 3D-print the personal protective equipment (PPE) using additive manufacturing machines in St. Louis, Missouri; El Segundo, California; Mesa, Arizona; Huntsville, Alabama, and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania – as long as those facilities remain in operation, consistent with federal, state and local health orders.

Depending on the size of the machine, up to 24 face shield frames can be 3D-printed each day. The company announced it is targeting an initial production rate of several thousand a week.

“We have open capacity, goodwill and a multitude of eager employees waiting and wanting to help in this crisis,” said Melissa Orme, vice president of Boeing Additive Manufacturing (BAM).

The design includes a 3D printed frame with an adjustable headband that allows a clear plastic face shield to be easily snapped onto the frame. Boeing is evaluating the best way to quickly cut the plastic needed for the face shields, leveraging advanced cutting technology used for aircraft parts.

Face shields and other PPE have been in such short supply that some doctors and nurses have turned to swimming goggles and other homemade options.

“This is a first-step solution to do what we can right now to help,” said Carlton Washburn, a program manager in BAM. “I’ve only seen positive behavior and amazing support from people – both inside of Boeing and externally – trying to offer help. It makes Boeing’s mission to protect people very real to me.”

The 3D printed face shields solution was developed by employees from Boeing Additive Manufacturing; Boeing Research & Technology; Boeing Defense, Space & Security; Supply Chain and HorizonX; along with support from Accenture, hospitals and universities.

“Boeing employees are always ready and willing to step up and help in times of need, and this is just another incredible example of that,” said Tim Keating, executive vice president of Government Operations. “I’m proud of all the work being done to support our communities during this challenging time. We hear you, we’re listening, and keep the ideas coming.”

The company also announced its intent to offer the use of the Boeing Dreamlifter, one of the largest cargo carriers in the world, to help transport critical and urgently needed supplies to health care professionals.

The Dreamlifter fleet consists of four specially adapted Boeing 747s with a max cargo weight of 63,000 pounds per plane. Boeing is coordinating closely with government officials on how best to provide support.

To date, Boeing has donated tens of thousands of masks, gloves and other equipment to hospitals in need.

The company is also analyzing several other ways it can engage its engineering, manufacturing and logistics expertise to help the cause. Additional details, including ways in which Boeing employees can continue to give back, will be communicated soon.