Tesla Gigafactory 2 Will Reopen Soon To Make Ventilators

Sign up for daily news updates from CleanTechnica on email. Or follow us on Google News!

When Elon Musk sets his mind to doing something, things happen fast, such as when he promised to build the world’s largest (at that time) grid-scale storage battery in Australia in 100 days or it would be free. That system was up and running well before Musk’s self-imposed deadline.

Courtesy of Tesla

A few days ago, Musk promised to manufacture ventilators to help cope with the coronavirus emergency, saying he had been in close contact with Medtronic, one of the major ventilator suppliers. He told CleanTechnica last Saturday that they should have 1,000 ventilators available within a week. On Wednesday, he tweeted:

The factory in Buffalo was shut down on Monday because of the crisis, but manufacturing ventilators could be reason enough to get the doors open again. New York is suffering more than any other state from the COVID-19 virus, with 17,240 new cases reported just since Sunday, according to the Washington Post. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo says his state is approaching the point where medical care will collapse. It is not that there are so many infections, it is that they are all happening at once.

Not only are there too few beds for those who are critically ill, but people requiring other life-saving care — including pregnant women — are unable to access health facilities that are already overburdened with coronavirus cases.

There is no word whether a collaboration with Medtronic is being planned at the Buffalo factory. According to Tech Crunch, Medtronic CEO Omar Ishrak told CNBC on Wednesday that it is increasing capacity of its critical care ventilators and partnering with others such as Tesla. He said Medtronic is open sourcing one of its lower-end ventilators used in less acute situations so that other companies can make them as quickly as possible. These lower-end ventilators, which are easier to produce since they have fewer components, can be used as an intermediary step in critical care.

The shortage of ventilators is a symptom of a world that is largely unprepared to deal with any number of infections that could strike humans at any time. Elon has wondered aloud whether there will be any need for the units his company will manufacture by the time they get into production. Considering the path we are on, he need have few concerns in that regard.

Have a tip for CleanTechnica? Want to advertise? Want to suggest a guest for our CleanTech Talk podcast? Contact us here.

Our Latest EVObsession Video

I don't like paywalls. You don't like paywalls. Who likes paywalls? Here at CleanTechnica, we implemented a limited paywall for a while, but it always felt wrong — and it was always tough to decide what we should put behind there. In theory, your most exclusive and best content goes behind a paywall. But then fewer people read it!! So, we've decided to completely nix paywalls here at CleanTechnica. But...
Like other media companies, we need reader support! If you support us, please chip in a bit monthly to help our team write, edit, and publish 15 cleantech stories a day!
Thank you!

CleanTechnica uses affiliate links. See our policy here.

Steve Hanley

Steve writes about the interface between technology and sustainability from his home in Florida or anywhere else The Force may lead him. He is proud to be "woke" and doesn't really give a damn why the glass broke. He believes passionately in what Socrates said 3000 years ago: "The secret to change is to focus all of your energy not on fighting the old but on building the new."

Steve Hanley has 5262 posts and counting. See all posts by Steve Hanley