As Covid-19 raced across the globe, health care systems faced shortages in personal protective equipment. This essential gear became more costly, and there was greater reliance on imports for it. 3D printing suddenly and urgently became a critical tool for managing the shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE), ventilators, and other medical equipment.
Manufacturers worldwide began donating their equipment to create face shields and ventilators. Companies in the industrial 3D printing and design industries, including my company, Dassault Systèmes, shared designs for PPE and software licenses. Makers, students, professors, hobbyists, inventors, designers, and engineers scattered across the globe initiated their own 3D printing projects.