Isle of Man Engineering and Manufacturing Businesses continue to play a pivotal role in response to COVID-19

01 February 2021

Engineering and Manufacturing businesses based in the Isle of Man have continued to prove their significance on a global scale as they have stepped up to support the local and international response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Businesses within the sector have continued to turn their expertise to designing and producing essential medical equipment to help combat the spread of the virus, including playing a significant part in the manufacture of the COVID-19 vaccination.

Examples of the ways Manx companies are helping the cause include:

  • Swagelok: continuing to provide vital valves, tubing and fittings used in ventilators and within the pharmaceutical field. Most recently, the company also undertook key regulator performance testing on behalf of a high-profile COVID-19 vaccine manufacturer in order to ensure that the regulator will meet their specific requirements as they seek to dramatically scale up their vaccine production to meet global demand.
  • Astrea Bioseparations: is playing a crucial role manufacturing purification products used in the production of biopharmaceuticals- therapeutic products derived from biological source material, including the COVID-19 vaccine. Given the key role purification products play in the production of biopharmaceuticals (in particular product safety and purity) and the highly regulated nature of the pharmaceutical industry, Astrea’s products are essential components of the manufacturing processes they are used in.
  • Bodystat: are supporting a Post-Hospitalisation-Covid research group, implemented across a variety of NHS trusts across the UK, by donating Bodystat consumables to assist with their research in identifying whether there are any longer term health effects and problems from patients who were hospitalised because of COVID-19. With the Bodystat devices, the group are able to perform a variety of clinical examinations to monitor the fat, lean and water content of the body over the short, medium and long term.
  • Henson Ceramics Limited: have designed and built an oxygen generator and Ozone steriliser that has been proven to combat SARS and have adapted it to tackle COVID-19. They have also recently manufactured a novel design of a dry ice mould required by our hospital to safely transfer pathology samples onwards to the UK.
  • Jantys: are continuing to manufacture essential parts for medical facemask production lines in the UK.

Ronaldsway Aircraft Company Limited, Triumph Integrated Systems, Kiartys Engineering Ltd and Precimatic Ltd have all  continued to supply a number of major UK and international defence, aerospace, telecommunication and energy customers, all of which have remained open for business and requiring a constant supply of product throughout the full period of the pandemic. Meanwhile, Strix Group PLC have been adapting ‘HaloPure’ technology water purification and disinfection solution to prevent the spread of African Swine Fever Virus (ASFV) in livestock farming and other applications within China.

Lawrie Hooper MHK, Political Member for Business Isle of Man commented:

‘There’s no doubt that the Isle of Man has a fantastic reputation for innovative engineering and manufacturing and I’m delighted to see so many Manx businesses contributing on a global scale to support the response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The sector has continued to work extremely well during this circuit breaker lockdown, doing what they can to ensure they do this with all social distancing and other hygiene measures in place. On behalf of the Isle of Man Government and the Manx people, I would like to extend my sincere thanks to these organisations, and many others, who are making such important contributions both on-island and beyond.’