Helping First Responders Breathe Easy

By April 27, 2020Articles, Events, Launches

The Provo Police Department issued a call for anyone with a 3D printer to fabricate reusable respirators for their first responders who were desperate for anything they could get. They provided a download link for files that were ready to go. The design allowed users to extend the life of a singe fabric mask by cutting it into 6 squares which could be inserted into the reusable mask.

Rocketship immediately put our machines to work around the clock. When the first parts came off the machines, however, we noticed that they didn’t fit very well and the vents didn’t allow enough air to flow for regular breathing. We scoured the internet for better designs and printed a dozen of them but each design had it’s own set of issues. After speaking with the fire department chief who confirmed the challenge we decided to create a mask of our own.

The design was driven the insights from the first responders we interviewed and after countless iterations and test prints we were able to produce a mask design that fit well to most faces and provided a great seal when used with common weather stripping from Home Depot. Ladder locks are used for the tie strap anchors so users don’t even have to tie knots.

The mask design is publicly available and you can download it here!