3D Printing News Blog

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Do prosthetics have to be expensive?

In the article below Jeremy Simon from 3duniverse.org talks about the $50 prosthetic hand he created for Jose Delgado Jr. and ask Jose to compare it to some of the much more expensive ones he has had to use in the past. While Jeremy does note that the comparision isn’t exactly, “apples to apples” Jose does seem to prefer the cheap 3-d printed hand for day-to-day activity. Everyday I’m amazed more and more as to how 3-d printing can transform lives and news like this only helps to renew that amazement.

http://www.3duniverse.org/2014/04/19/jose-delgado-jr-compares-his-new-3d-printed-hand-to-his-more-expensive-myoelectric-prosthesis/


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One man’s trash…

While we haven’t reached the point of being able to just shovel our used waterbottles into a machine in our house and have something new come out. We have moved one step closer with Liz Havlin’s open source project based on the work of Hugh Lyman. The device will be able to take recycled nuggets of plastic and spin it out into spools for printing. Liz is working on getting a kickstarter for the project up and running.

http://www.3ders.org/articles/20140421-lyman-filament-extruder-soon-on-kickstarter-turning-old-plastic-into-3d-printer-ink.html


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Waste into Housing?

According to 3dprinting.com a Chinese company has found a way to print houses for cheap using construction and industrial waste.  If these do wind up being true and easily repeatable this could allow for housing in parts of the world that previously would have been unable to have a house due to lack of resources whether financial or physical.

http://3dprinting.com/news/winsun-uses-waste-3d-print-houses-4800-dollars/


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3-D printing exoskeletons

3-D printing can be a god-send to those whom whether by nature or tramatic incident have some kind of disability. One use for 3-D printing is creating exoskeletons that would allow for a person to walk or use limbs they would otherwise be unable to. The article below talks about one of those cases.

http://www.cnn.com/2014/04/02/health/robot-exoskeleton-wrex-mohn/index.html


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3D Printers in Space

https://i2.wp.com/upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/4/41/Space_Shuttle_Columbia_launching.jpg

 

The thought of 3D printed materials being used in space exploration is quite fascinating. The revolution of 3D printing just continues to expand at an exponential rate. One of the main factors of NASA space exploration missions comes down to budget allotted by our government. In 2015, it has been reported that Congress has approved a $17.5 billion budget for NASA.

So, anything that could help ease the cost of materials heading to space would be a great benefit for exploration. Now, with 3D printers becoming smaller and more accessible, it will be possible for astronauts to bring the printers up to space with them, as listed in this recent article by phys.org:

“Manned missions could carry a 3D printer with them to ensure full self-reliance as they fly many months or years distant from Earth. Any broken item could be quickly and easily replaced.” This would absolutely come in handy if NASA does end up sending manned spacecraft to Mars.

One reason that this technology will be so useful for NASA is due to the type of manufacturing that 3D printing will allow. This is known as Additive Manufacturing (AM). Basically, rather than starting with a large mold that is chiseled down to create whatever objects are needed (known as Subtractive Manufacturing), with 3D printing you can create several smaller parts that you would then piece together. Certainly there will be more news on this in the future, so stay tuned!