iMET and local engineering firms combine resources to produce PPE

iMET and local engineering firms combine resources to produce PPE


Alconbury, Huntingdonshire (Apr 30, 2020) – Local engineering firms have been working together in the fight against Coronavirus, to develop much needed PPE to local GP surgeries.

iMET Skills, and advanced technical training centre in Alconbury, Huntingdon is normally focused on delivering engineering apprenticeships, however with all learning now moved to on-line delivery and their workshops and training facility sitting empty, they took to utilising their skills and resources to producing PPE.

“We’ve all heard about the shortages of PPE and we really wanted to do our bit to help. At iMET, we have a suite of eleven 3D printers and they were just collecting dust, so we thought we could put them to use printing plastic face bands, then on talking to our business partners we realised that with their help, we could produce the complete face shield that could then be delivered locally to our GP surgeries” Greg Hanrahan, Operations Director, iMET.

iMET turned to Corby-based plastics specialists, RPC Superfos to help them source the 3D printing software for the face bands as well as then donating the PET plastic to be used for the face shields. iMET then reached out to laser cutting specialists, Lasercut, based in Orton Southgate, Peterborough who provided aluminium templates to trim and cut the face shields and finally to local engineering firm JJM Services, based in Huntingdon who helped by designing a customised hole punching tool to enable the shields to be attached to the face bands.

It was then all hands-on deck for the iMET team of staff and tutors who came into work to assemble the face masks ahead of dropping them off at the convenient Alconbury Weald drop off centre. In total, 150 face masks have been produced so far, but this is only the start, the iMET 3D printers are back up and running to produce the next batch.

“We know we’ve only produced a few face shields when still 1,000s are needed, but we’ve felt proud that we have been able to help our local communities in some small way, fight this virus. iMET is all about collaboration with local industry, and we couldn’t have done it without the help and support of our business partners; this has been a great example of how by working together, sharing resources and knowledge, we can achieve new things!” Greg Hanrahan, Operations Director, iMET.


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Notes to Editors

About iMET

 iMET is an advanced technical training centre, based in the heart of the Alconbury Weald Enterprise Campus, providing higher-level training for the built environment, manufacturing, and science & technology sectors in the East Anglia region.

A joint venture between Peterborough Regional College and Cambridge Regional College and funded by the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority, via the Government’s Local Growth Fund, iMET focuses on teaching vocational skills and bringing businesses together from a range of different sectors, industries and disciplines for the purpose of equipping current and future generations with industry-relevant knowledge, skills and behaviours.