Jaguar Land Rover create lightweight 3D printed glove to protect workers from musculoskeletal disorders.
Jaguar Land Rover engineers are working on the next generation of protective workwear. We are talking about a lightweight 3D printed glove that could help employees cope with the threat of a musculoskeletal disorder. The glove is designed for people who work in the production line, such as those in charge of placing clips or fasteners in the chassis during the assembly of Jaguar and Land Rover luxury vehicles.
As a matter of fact musculoskeletal disorders, which include more than 100 different types of diseases, account for about 30% of total workplace injuries that cause sick leave and account for a third of the compensation paid to employees. Musculoskeletal disorders are estimated to affect 10% of the global population. Indeed, this percentage increases up to 40% in certain sectors.
A SAFE PAIR OF HANDS FOR WORKERS
The engineers at the Jaguar Land Rover Gaydon plant, where one of the largest 3D printers in the United Kingdom is located, saw the opportunity to take advantage of the company’s extensive manufacturing experience to design and print a grid structure in 3D to help to reduce muscle fatigue. Even better, the glove is flexible and comfortable enough to wear during an 8-hour shift. Thanks to a computer-assisted 3D design software, the team created test designs with different densities and different materials. An invention that is worth patenting.
Currently, the team is working on a second generation prototype based on the test results. This will include a foam pad made of D30 impact additive, a polymeric material that absorbs impacts when subjected to pressure. In this way, the glove will be suitable for those who place pieces with the palm of the hand, such as the door coverings. In the short term, the gloves will help the workers of the different automotive facilities and protect them against musculoskeletal disorders. These gloves are part of a larger-scale future plan to offer a range of technologies that benefit people with muscle weakness or suffer physical or neurological disorders. This latter could help employees return to work.
Chris Noble, Additive Manufacturing Strategic Engineer of Jaguar Land Rover, said:
“The health and well-being of our workforce remains our priority across all factories and facilities. to use the world-leading expertise and equipment we have, in-house. in this case HP Multi Jet Fusion technology, to protect the hands of our makers, developing equipment that will make Jaguar Land Rover a great place to work, now and in the future.”
The Additive Manufacturing Center of Jaguar Land Rover produces more than 80,000 pieces per year with various applications. The range goes from functional prototypes and design models, to accessories for the manufacturing assembly. Jaguar Land Rover can also print 3D parts for mass-produced vehicles, such as the Jaguar XE SV Project 8.
This program is part of the Jaguar Land Rover Destination Zero strategy. Their goal is to create a safer and healthier society with a cleaner environment. Through continuous innovation, the company seeks to achieve a future with zero emissions, zero accidents and services congestion. – Across its facilities, and through its products and services.
Watch the production of the Jaguar Land Rover 3D Printed Gloves:
Information Source: JAGUAR LAND ROVER.