Kingsport, Tenn., April 13, 2020 – As part of the world’s collective effort to respond to the coronavirus pandemic, Eastman is donating materials to produce protective lenses and face shields for medical personnel.
Eastman donated 600 square feet of material to Purdue University. More than 40 volunteer faculty and staff members are using the school’s laser cutting system to produce up to 3,000 lenses and 4,000 face shields. The protective equipment will be distributed to hospitals across Indiana.
“I’m proud of the speed at which the Eastman team was able to get material to the teams at Purdue,” said Brendan Boyd, Vice President, Specialty Plastics & Fibers Technology said. “The need for more protective equipment is urgent. We value these innovative partnerships that can meet a significant community need quickly and effectively.”
Personal protective equipment (PPE) plays an essential role in protecting medical personnel and others on the front lines battling the epidemic. Safety glasses and face shields protect people from droplets produced by coughing and sneezing and can help prevent workers from touching their faces.
Purdue’s Bechtel Innovation Design Center is using a pilot-scale manufacturing facility to make protective glasses and face shields. “Under guidance from medical professionals, we have redesigned and manufactured complex fittings for ventilators and are actively producing laser cut, waterjet cut, and 3D-printed parts for face shields and safety glasses,” said David McMillan, assistant director of the center.
In addition to the Purdue donation, Eastman employees around the globe are serving an essential role in the response to COVID-19. Eastman has donated material to organizations in Tennessee, Virginia, and Brazil for the production of face shields. In Europe, the company has donated resins to customers that are making hand sanitizer instead of cosmetics.
Founded in 1920, Eastman is a global specialty materials company that produces a broad range of products found in items people use every day. With the purpose of enhancing the quality of life in a material way, Eastman works with customers to deliver innovative products and solutions while maintaining a commitment to safety and sustainability. The company’s innovation-driven growth model takes advantage of world-class technology platforms, deep customer engagement, and differentiated application development to grow its leading positions in attractive end-markets such as transportation, building and construction, and consumables. As a globally inclusive and diverse company, Eastman employs approximately 14,500 people around the world and serves customers in more than 100 countries. The company had 2019 revenues of approximately $9.3 billion and is headquartered in Kingsport, Tennessee, USA. Learn more at
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