Within a matter of weeks, the company produced a working prototype of a powered air-purifying respirator, or PAPR for short, that it'll soon send to the federal government for emergency approval.
RELATED: Western States Pact jointly request $1 trillion from federal government, Gov. Gavin Newsom announces
"We've been incrementally designing and then have to perform all the different tests to make sure that these will work and that these will work robustly in a hospital environment," said senior research scientist Kristyn Kadala.
The process from conception to authorization would normally take years under normal circumstances, but the FDA is making exceptions on a case-by-case basis.
"The workers will be protected, they'll receive adequate airflow, and they'll also have something that will stay clean and free of any contaminants," added Kadala.
With limited supplies, the goal is to take advantage of easier-to-find pieces that can be put together to deliver the same functionality at a lower cost. For example, a relatively inexpensive respirator bag can be used as a stopgap for patients.
RELATED: Reopening San Francisco businesses will depend on COVID-19 hospitalizations, health director says
"You've seen respirator bags on any medical show, where the patients are going down the hall, squeezing the bag to keep them breathing... well that's a respirator bag, so we have a device that will mechanically squeeze that," said senior space security manager Scott Richardson.
Lockheed Martin plans to provide these highly sought-after items free of charge to hospitals in the Bay Area. In addition, the company has already produced and donated more than 30,000 protective gowns and 25,000 face shields, as well as temperature scanners and mask sterilization tools, to dozens of other medical facilities across the country.
"We never forget who we're working for at Lockheed Martin," said senior operations manager Shawn Wood. "That has never hit more home than it does right now, because these people are in our backyard. These are our frontline defenders and it feels really good to help keep them safe."
If you have a question or comment about the coronavirus pandemic, submit yours via the form below or here.
Get the latest news, information and videos about the novel coronavirus pandemic here
RELATED STORIES & VIDEOS:
- COVID-19 Help: Comprehensive list of resources, information
- INTERACTIVE TIMELINE: How close was CA to becoming a NY-level crisis?
- Live updates about coronavirus outbreak in US, around the world
- What will it take to get a COVID-19 vaccine and how will it be made?
- How California's COVID-19 cases stack up against other hot spot states
- Everything you need to know about the Bay Area's shelter-in-place order
- Coronavirus Timeline: Tracking major moments of COVID-19 pandemic in San Francisco Bay Area/
- List: Where can I get tested for COVID-19 in the Bay Area?
- COVID-19 Diaries: Personal stories of Bay Area residents during novel coronavirus pandemic
- Coronavirus Doctor's Note: Dr. Alok Patel gives his insight into COVID-19 pandemic
- What does COVID-19 do to your body and why does it spread so easily?
- Stimulus calculator: How much money should you expect from coronavirus relief bill
- WATCH: 'Race & Coronavirus: A Bay Area Conversation' virtual town hall about COVID-19 impact on Asian American community
- WATCH: 'Race & Coronavirus: A Bay Area Conversation' virtual town hall about COVID-19 impact on African American community
- What Bay Area tenants need to know about rent payments, eviction amid COVID-19 outbreak
- Here's how shelter in place, stay at home orders can slow spread of COVID-19
- Symptoms, prevention, and how to prepare for a COVID-19 outbreak in the US
- List of stores, companies closing due to coronavirus pandemic
- Canceled late fees, free services available amid COVID-19 crisis
- Here's how you can help during COVID-19 pandemic
- How to maintain learning during school closures
- No masks but here are 100+ products that may help protect you against novel coronavirus germs
- Here's a look at some of history's worst pandemics that have killed millions