Bosch has started fully-automated production of facemasks at its plant in Stuttgart-Feuerbach.

“Containing coronavirus is a challenge for society as a whole,” said Bosch chairman, Volkmar Denner.

“By equipping our associates with masks we make ourselves, we are helping to relieve the burden on the market. Moreover, we are doing the groundwork that will enable us to safely resume operations and protect our associates.”

Following a ramp-up which will run until the end of June, the company will make more than half a million masks per day on five production lines at four locations worldwide.

The lines were designed by Bosch’s machinery unit. Bosch is making the design plans available to interested companies free of charge.

The supplier says it has received enquiries from more than 30 companies regarding the designs of the special production line.

In addition to the plant in Stuttgart-Feuerbach, where two lines are planned, mask production will be ramped up at Bosch locations in Naganathapura, India, and Juárez, Mexico, in successive weeks.

A facility at the Rexroth plant in Erbach, Germany, will round off the manufacturing network. Overall, by the end of June, production volume of the five lines is set to exceed 10m masks a month.