COVID-19 Gives JMTC 3D Print Shop Extra Work
Workers on Arsenal Island are busy helping the Army and federal government respond to COVID-19.
Michelle O'Neill reports the Joint Manufacturing and Technology Center opened the Advanced and Additive Manufacturing Center of Excellence about a year ago.
Major General Daniel Mitchell is the Commander of the Tank Automotive and Armaments Command, or TACOM, at the Detroit Arsenal.
He says the center at the Rock Island Arsenal has already made 150 sets of ventilator parts using 3-D printers.
The pandemic crisis has provided a bit of a silver lining for the Rock Island Arsenal's Additive Manufacturing Center of Excellence.
That's because employees have been on a fast track to learn how to reverse engineer and develop products, then get them approved.
Mitchell says now, employees are working on submitting a bid to make face shields and kits for the Army or FEMA.
The Advanced and Additive Manufacturing Center of Excellence is also working on a plan to make long test swabs. Major General Mitchelle says the Army has a critical shortage of the swabs needed to test for COVID-19 all over the world.
Mitchell says the entire Joint Manufacturing and Techology Center is busier now than before the pandemic.
Employees continue to make armor kits, mobile ambulances, and gun mounts.
That's without about 10% of the factory's employees. Many of them are quarantined at home because they're at high risk of serious illness if they catch COVID-19.