The efforts will increase critical equipment as hospitals combat the coronavirusApril 7, 2020, 8:11 AM8 min read The U.S. military is 3D-printing face shields, designing reusable plastic N95 masks and sewing surgical masks to increase the supply of critical medical equipment as hospitals across the U.S. work to combat the coronavirus pandemic. Nine Navy and Marine Corps commands began their 3D-printing efforts on March 28 after the Federal Emergency Management Agency requested the initial production of 220 medical face shields, the Navy said in a news release. Days later, the assistant secretary of the Navy for research, development and acquisition authorized all of its commands to support FEMA requests, saying that the country is in a national emergency so they “must engage accordingly.” The U.S. military is uniquely poised to assist in the production of personal protective equipment because of its expertise in additive manufacturing, or 3D printing. The Marine Corps’ Advanced Manufacturing Operations Cell (AMOC) was the first to receive FEMA’s request for 220 face shields before alerting other Department of the Navy manufacturers. “Every (additive manufacturing) producer I reached out to stepped up,” said Marine Capt. Matthew Audette, an advanced manufacturing project officer with AMOC. “It speaks volumes

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