The government has placed an order for 10,000 ventilators from Dyson to help tackle the Coronavirus.

It comes just 10 days after the government issued a plea to factories in the UK to help support the production of the vital life-saving equipment that is in such high demand.

Working with medical company, The Technology Partnership, Dyson said it has converted two aircraft hangars use during WWII at its base in Wiltshire in order to start production on a new design from scratch. It also revealed it has ‘hundreds’ of engineers working on the project.

However, the prototypes still need to go through strict medical tests and it is likely to take a few weeks at least to go from prototype stage to manufacturing the machines at scale.

The NHS currently has around 8,000 ventilators, but it is estimated that around 30,000 will be needed in order to tackle the virus and save as many lives as possible. The government believes is can procure a further 8,000 from domestic and international suppliers. Earlier this week, car manufacturers have pledged their support to the manufacturing effort.

Ventilators are used to help people breathe when they have lung disease, or during and after surgery. As Coronavirus is a respiratory virus, ventilators are an essential aspect of the NHS’ fight.

Elsewhere, a group of medical, military and civil engineering firms are working together to ramp up production of an existing model. Ordinarily, this is a process that would take months or even years, but it is being introduced in just a few weeks.