Will 3D printing in space allow us to build new worlds?

http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/will-3d-printing-space-allow-us-build-new-worlds/

Will 3D printing in space allow us to build new worlds?

So far, space travel is limited because we have to transport everything we need using rockets. But what if we could build whatever we needed? Jason Dunn, whose company built the first 3D printer to operate in space, shares his Brief but Spectacular take on the future of self-sufficiency in space travel.

TRANSCRIPT

GWEN IFILL: Now to our weekly feature Brief But Spectacular.

Tonight, we hear from Jason Dunn of Made In Space, a company based out of Singularity University, the California-based firm responsible for making the first 3-D printer to operate out of this world.

JASON DUNN, Made In Space: I think that, in our lifetime, everybody we know will have a chance to go to space.

It’s really hard to do space exploration today, because we are dependent on bringing everything on rockets from the surface of the planet. So, what we started working on was the idea of 3-D printing in space and in fact just building the things you need wherever you need it.

Today’s version of space exploration is like a camping trip. We bring everything we need with us, and, if something goes wrong, we go back home really quick or we call home and ask for some help.

So if we want to go live on Mars one day or go back to the moon and set up a base, we need to learn how to be self-sufficient in the way we explore space.

Figuring out how to make a 3-D printer work in zero gravity was one of the most difficult parts. We got to take our 3-D printers into an aircraft that flies acrobatic maneuvers in the sky. You get a little period of weightlessness and you actually float inside of the airplane.

Everything is falling into place that we can actually send people to Mars and to the moon and to the asteroids, that we can build entirely new worlds of our own like large space stations. And that’s really the vision, is that we have the entire universe at our disposal to go out and explore.

Growing up in Florida was — for me, it was a lot about exploration. I lived on the Gulf of Mexico. I had my own boat. I spent most of my days exploring mangrove swamps and estuaries and things like that.

Space is like the ocean that I grew up sitting on the edge of, and I feel like, as humanity, we’re on this — like, the surface of the planet, which is like the shore, and we’re ready to now finally go out and see what’s out in the ocean.

My name is Jason Dunn, and this is my Brief But Spectacular take on why our future will be made in space.

References:

pbs.org

http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/will-3d-printing-space-allow-us-build-new-worlds/

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3D printed titanium jaw implant for a sea turtle

http://3dprint.com/65476/sea-turtle-3d-printed-jaw/

turtleani

Turkish Turtle Receives 3D Printed Titanium Jaw

3DPrint.com head office is stationed in sunny Florida, I’m here in northeast Ohio, where we’re still waiting in mid-May for spring to settle in for sure. Back in February, I skipped out on Cleveland’s -20°F cold front and hopped a plane down to visit a friend in south Florida for a week. As my fiancé and family continued to freeze, my friend asked if I wanted to go down to the ocean one evening, so we could see if the sea turtles were coming in. Aside from my obvious cheer at weather that was actually a ‘real feel’ of a solid 100° temperature difference (it’s a different world, going from -20° to 80° in one day) and frolicking beachside, I was so excited to go see the turtles–few animals in nature are quite as impressive, long-lived, and stately as the sea turtle.

Seven species of sea turtle currently live around the world, and four are classified as either “endangered” or “critically endangered,” with another two being “vulnerable” to joining their ranks. One of the endangered species, the Caretta caretta or loggerhead sea turtle, has a lifespan of up to almost 70 years and can be found in the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific Oceans, as well as the Mediterranean Sea–all places where, especially since they need to lay their eggs on land, they are unfortunately susceptible to the negative environmental influence brought about by humans.

turtle

In Turkey, a loggerhead sea turtle was recently brought to the Sea Turtle Research, Rescue and Rehabilitation Center at Pamukkale University (PAU). The turtle, which they called AKUT3, had significant damage to its upper and lower jaws, and the team at PAU noted that the turtle was unable to feed on its own in the wild.

The Sea Turtle Research, Rescue and Rehabilitation Center at PAU was quick to help, and it turned out that the turtle’s best chance for healing came courtesy of 3D printing. The Center’s director, Prof. Dr. Yakup Kaska, noted that 3D technology proved to be the best hope for the turtle–and this particular operation would represent the first time in the world that a sea turtle would benefit from the technology.

btech

BTech Innovation, “the first private R&D corporation in Turkey,” has extensive experience with 3D technology for medical applications–creating medical-grade implants, models, and prostheses–and came to the turtle’s aid. Using CT scans from the turtle’s veterinary care, the BTech team used the Mimics Innovation Suite from Materialise to create a 3D model of the affected areas of the turtle’s jaws. Ultimately, BTech took the models created to design an implant for the turtle, 3D printing it in titanium.

jaw closeup

The surgery was a success and the patient is recovering quite nicely, though that process is sure in itself to require some time. The turtle’s veterinary surgeon, Prof. Dr. Anas M. Anderson, noted that the turtle did not show any signs of rejecting the implant, following a post-op examination 18 days after the procedure.

While I didn’t actually get to see any sea turtles on my Floridian jaunt a few months ago, it’s wonderful to know that thanks to the efforts of caring veterinary teams around the world, there will still be more chances to see these incredible, endangered gentle giants as their health needs can be met and their lives saved.

Have you heard of similar stories of 3D printed implants in the veterinary world? Let us know what you think of this one in the 3D Printed Titanium Jaw Implant for a Sea Turtle forum thread over at 3DPB.com.

turtle jaw

btech

3dprint.com

by   | MAY 14, 2015

3D printed robots again popular ?

The Never-Ending Battle Against Litter May Change Forever if 3D Printed Robots Become Popular

http://goo.gl/BjcqIY

rec3

I frequent the famous white-sanded and turquoise-watered beaches of the Florida panhandle. And, as much as we say it over and over, it IS infuriating to see trash on the ground and in the water.  This is especially a problem during Spring Break all over the United States. Where I walk, I could spend the hour just picking up plastic bottles and aluminum beer cans–but I gave that up because they keep reappearing. Well, if one designer has her way there may be a new beach cleaning ‘Doctor’ in town.  Mingyu Jeong designed a concept for what could best be described as an automated robotic beach cleaner with a built in 3D printer.  Called Dr. Recare, it could change the way we deal with litter.  Could this concept become a reality?

Dr. Recare is a 3D printing robotic “doctor” designed with the mission of a superhero (or superhuman): it can supposedly easily, efficiently–and triumphantly once and for all?–clean up our beaches while we still enjoy the sand and waves. This machine works in a way that I would not have easily imagined would be efficient, and I have questions about cost.

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Dr. Recare cleans sand itself by acting as a plastics recycler — on site. It extracts and heats up plastic garbage, then turns the plastic into 3D printer filament which it uses to 3D print recycling bins.  You can view the whole process here.

Part of the reason we are in the position we are in regarding beach pollution is there has been massive oil spills and no efforts to support the clean-up from the front line plastics production side of the issue.  (We can simply stop producing more trash.)  Oil companies spill with little repercussions, humans litter, and beaches get junked: but what’s the actual expense, and is on-site recycling via 3D printing with the trash a solution?

For example, on Panama City Beach, Florida you see tons of trash on the beaches at Spring Break.  This, and participants’ behavior,  has caused locals to call for canceling Spring Break altogether — which is impossible to do.  Now that we have located the problem of making clean up attractive with Dr. Recare’s help: maybe Spring Break beaches could showcase this as an educational tool, or a student volunteer opportunity, if it’s ever actually manufactured.

You can see by the size of the above crowd, on site stations could be established and highly functional.  People are still needed to run these machines, ultimately, but they showcase 3D printing technology and the significance of the actual behavior of generating so much waste by recycling it in front of users’ eyes on location.  I see Dr. Recares as being one way to approach recycling plastic into something useful–but we still want to stop generating plastic bins at some point too right?  The educational aspect of this design is its best feature — and I would love to go see them out on site at our next Spring Break!

Highly trafficked beach locations also feature events like Pirates’ Day and many concerts.  These are the days that public education is most possible for things like 3D printing.  When I look at 3D printing projects, I want to see a holistic design effort that also views the environmental costs of actually making the machine itself.  If it can be integrated into holistic public education and practical beach clean-up efforts, without being touted as the “answer”: I am all for it.  Let’s get started yesterday!  Let’s hear your thoughts on this concept.  Discuss in theDr. Recare forum thread on 3DPB.com.

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3DPRINT.COM
by  | JANUARY 2, 2015

Restore a Frank Lloyd Wright building thanks of 3D printing

The 21st century method of restoring buildings; 3D printing!
http://gizmodo.com/3d-printing-is-helping-restore-an-iconic…

3D Printing Is Being Used to Restore a Frank Lloyd Wright Classic

The largest collection of Frank Lloyd Wright buildings in the world is at Florida Southern College. Depending on how you count, there are 7 to 12 buildings, the most distinctive of which is Annie Pfeiffer Chapel. Time has taken its toll on the chapel’s one-of-a-kind concrete blocks, but it’s the 21st century, and we now have a modern solution to fix them: 3D printing.

Child of the Sun, as the group of Wright-designed buildings is called, was built over two decades between 1941 and 1958. A few years ago, the architecture firm Mesick Cohen Wilson Baker Architects (MCWB) was brought on to restore the buildings.

3D Printing Is Being Used to Restore a Frank Lloyd Wright Classic

The Pfeiffer Chapel presented a special challenge. Thousands of Wright’s signature textile blocks make up the walls of the chapel. Time—as well as a hurricane and a failed restoration attempt—have not been kind to the crumbling concrete blocks. With the original handcrafted molds lost, reproducing the patterned blocks would have been prohibitively expensive.

Enter the 3D printing restoration project, funded by $50,000 from the Florida Division of Historical Resources and $350,000 from the National Park Service’s Save America’s Treasures Program. Rather than print concrete blocks, the architects printed plastic molds to cast the concrete. Some handmade parts were added to finalize the molds, but the machines significantly lightened the traditionally labor-intensive process.

3D Printing Is Being Used to Restore a Frank Lloyd Wright Classic

3D Printing Is Being Used to Restore a Frank Lloyd Wright Classic

The restoration at Pfeiffer Chapel is still in progress, and the architects are perfecting their mold printing process. Should it all work out, 3D printing could one day have a major role in the faithful restoration of buildings. To start, Wright designed several iconic textile houses, all made of concrete, all aging, all potential candidates someday for 3D printing restoration.

GIZMODO.COM
by Sarah Zhang | 9/18/14 9:08pm

Prosthetic arm from 3D printer

Here’s some touching news to brighten up your Monday a bit 🙂

http://rt.com/news/175904-kid-prosthetic-arm-3d/

image from http://today.ucf.edu

A 6 year-old boy from Florida born with right arm deficiency has received a prosthetic replacement. Now climbing a tree and catching a ball will be easier for him. Students from Florida University made it on a 3D printer for just $350 in just 8 weeks.

Help for little Alex Pring, missing his right arm from just above the elbow, came from students at the University of Central Florida. An engineering doctoral student, Albert Manero, heard about the boy’s needs and decided to recruit a team of students to create a solution for the boy.

“I mean, I’m me. So I don’t have an arm,” little Alex said. “I still try real hard to do things like other kids using what I’ve got. But it’s getting harder the more I grow,” according to the official website of University of Central Florida.

The arm and part of the hand were made on a 3D printer. They run with off-the-shelf servos and batteries that are activated by the electromyography muscle energy in Alex’s bicep.

Alex’s new limb only cost $350 to build. In comparison, prosthetic arms for children cost much more – about $40,000 – and they have to be replaced often as children grow.

Also prosthetics for kids are more difficult to make than for adults because the components are much smaller, according to Manero. When Alex gets too big for his new limb, new parts will be printed and they will also be cheap– only $20 for a new hand, and around $40 to $50 for a replacement forearm.

“I hope that people look at these other arms that cost $40,000,” Manero said. “If we can do this for just $350 in 8 weeks, I’m sure we’re going to keep pioneering.”

The arm was delivered to Alex on Friday. He practiced his new limb on a toy duck. He managed to grip the toy and squeeze it with his new hand. Then he rushed to his mother to hug her with both hands –for the first time in his life.

“When he hugged me with two hands, he just didn’t let go,” said Alyson Pring, Alex’s mother. “It was amazing. I think it will help his confidence, so he can see future possibilities and make them seem all the more reachable for him.”

Manero, who has a master’s degree from UCF in aerospace engineering and is writing his Ph.D., said he believes the team’s design could help many similarly affected children.

“My mother taught us that we’re supposed to help change the world,” said Manero. “We’re supposed to help make it better. That’s why we did it. The look on Alex’s face when he used it for the first time was priceless.”

And the enthusiastic team doesn’t want to stop at Alex – they have decided to help all children with such problems.

“We’ve already heard from another family who needs an arm. We’re committed to helping who we can.”

“ I think 3-D printing is revolutionizing our world in many ways. I believe changing the world of prosthetics is very real. There’s no reason why this approach shouldn’t work on adults too.”

References: