California Manufacturers & Technology Association (CMTA) Launches Marketplace for PPE

Autodesk, Intel Join Effort to Reboot Manufacturing in California

Autodesk, Intel Join Effort to Reboot Manufacturing in California

CMTA launches Safely Making CA, a site connecting PPE producers and PPE purchasers.


Last week, California Manufacturers & Technology Association (CMTA) Launched Safely Making California, an online marketplace for PPE (personal protective equipment).

The site connects those in search of PPE and a list of manufacturers producing them. It also serves as a place for trade associations to request PPEs free of charge, while supplies remain.

“To help ensure manufacturers have what they need to stay operational to actually make the protective gear for other sectors, the site is also connecting the sector to the California Office of Emergency Services' program for allocated free PPE while their supplies last. There is a form for manufacturers to fill out to request face masks and sanitizer,” according to CMTA's announcement.

A similar PPE making site has also been launched by the additive manufacturing association America Makes. (Check out America Makes' site here.)

California-based PPE Commerce

In the early phase of the pandemic, many AM systems developers, trade schools, universities, hobbyists, and makers join the drive to produce and deliver free PPE to the hospitals in need. (For more, read “Stratasys Organizes 3D-Printed Protective Gear Drive to Fight COVID-19” and “Academia Pitches in to Make PPE.”)

But the continuing demand has also spawned a sub-economy, prompting service providers and manufacturers to shift focus. 

Sunglasses maker Oakley is among those who reconfigured their production lines to make PPE.

On-demand manufacturing service provider Fictiv now has a dedicated site for ordering PPEs. Align, makers of the well-known Invisalign corrective dental products, now produces PPE using its 3D printing capacity. 

Autodesk and Intel Pitch In

Design software maker Autodesk, headquartered in San Rafael, California, is a partner in the CMTA project. It is granting 300 free licenses for its cloud-based collaboration software, according to CMTA's announcement.

“Autodesk is invested in the health and safety of our community across California and the rest of the world, and we want to see a workforce with access to all the personal protective equipment it needs. The manufacturing industry can play a critical role in addressing the PPE shortfall to help workers stay safe as businesses reopen,” said Lisa Campbell, SVP of Business Strategy and Chief Marketing Officer at Autodesk. 

Another partner for the site is CPU maker Intel. It is “excited to appoint two Intel employees, one full-time project coordinator and one part-time product engineer, to help CMTA manage and source nonmedical personal protective gear. We believe we are stronger together and we are honored to do our part to ensure a safe reopening of California through CMTA's innovative model,” said Intel Foundation President, Pia Wilson-Body. 

During last week's launch of the CMTA site at Tri Tool manufacturing, California Governor Gavin Newsom said, “We want to incentivize more California-based manufacturing. We want to encourage purchasers or protective gears—gowns, gloves, sanitizers, face covering, face masks, plexiglass, shields, and the likes—to purchase them from California-based manufacturers ... We want [manufacturers] to make a difference, and also make a profit.”
 

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Kenneth Wong

Kenneth Wong is Digital Engineering’s resident blogger and senior editor. Email him at [email protected] or share your thoughts on this article at digitaleng.news/facebook.

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