Formula 1 teams based in the United Kingdom are working with government and health authorities to aid medical relief amid a shortage of ventilators due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
As case numbers rise above 300,000 worldwide, there is a threat of a shortage of ventilators, among other key medical supplies, which are desperately needed in the fight against the pandemic.
A ventilators is a key piece of medical equipment which is used to support patients with breathing difficulties, as well as those who suffer lung problems and pneumonia – two key side affects of the virus.
In response to the looming shortage, all seven UK-based F1 teams are employing their respective technology arms to manufacture devices to aid medical shortages.
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It comes after the UK government called to action businesses that may be able to help supply respiratory devices or components, as well as design and test prototype and existing models.
That’s where the seven UK-based F1 teams – Mercedes, Red Bull, McLaren, Racing Point, Renault, Haas and Williams – come in, all offering to help as there is currently no racing.
Teams are already preparing for the shutdown period, which was brought forward from its traditional summer August block amid the outbreak.
In conjunction with University College London, as well as Innovate UK and High Value Manufacturing Catapult, teams are uniting with academics, teaching hospitals and engineering experts to help in the crisis response.
Current estimates suggest the UK needs an additional 20,000 ventilators to deal with the effects of the outbreak. As of Sunday evening (AEDT), There are more than 5000 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK, which has resulted in 233 deaths.
An F1 statement explained: “The teams are working in collaboration with Formula 1, the UK Government and other organisations to establish the feasibility of the teams producing, or supporting the production of, medical devices to help in the treatment of COVID-19 patients.
“All the teams have expert design, technology and production capabilities, and specialise in rapid prototyping and high value manufacturing, which is hoped can be applied to the critical needs set out by Government.
“Working with Innovate UK, the High Value Manufacturing Catapult team and UCL and University College London Hospitals, the teams are evaluating a number of routes in conjunction with existing manufacturers and organisations from the aerospace and automotive sectors.”