Gulfport High School football & robotics collaborate on COVID-19 face shields

Gulfport High School football & robotics collaborate on COVID-19 face shields

BILOXI, Miss. (WLOX) - A unique partnership, for a real world challenge. Right now, the Gulfport High Football team is getting some help with COVID-19 gear from an unlikely source, the school’s robotics team.

Due to COVID-19, the Admirals needed clear face shields over their helmets to add another layer of protection. Team Fusion 364 designed and created a clear, polycarbonate shield that was cut with a laser printer that fits on each football helmet and covers the entire face mask.

“We’re living in a different time,” said John Archie, Gulfport High School head football coach. “There was a lot of uncertainty of when we’re gonna play football or not. But, it was our job as coaches and administrators that if we did play to keep our kids as safe as possible while they’re out there on the field.”

The idea started with computer templates. After a month and eight generations, the design was entered into a laser printer. All someone has to do is add polycarbonate material, let the printer do the work, and you get a solution to a real world challenge.

The new helmet face shields peel off like a cell phone screen protector.

Admiral players like Reggie Buggs, senior linebacker, who takes robotics classes said the shields will help them focus on playing rather than focusing on the pandemic.

"Honestly, I feel like I have new hope for the team," Buggs said. "With these face masks, it gives us more freedom to play the way we want to get all the highlights and do our job."

They'll be testing them out next week when Gulfport begins practice.

“It feels very good. I can see everything,” Buggs added. “I feel like if I get on the field I can do my best.”

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