NASA is betting on 3D printing
NASA may be best known for putting a man on the moon but it is really here on Earth it has had the most effect. Technology and research developed to support the space program have spawned over 6300 patents and led to many everyday items we take for granted. Consumer products in nearly every aspect of life from invisible braces and water filters to better cordless power tools have their origins in the research conducted by NASA. So what’s one of the most innovative government agencies experimenting with now? 3D Printing.
From sponsoring a $125,000 grant to experiment with 3D printed food (of course, they’ll start with making pizza) to helping Made in Space, a 3D printing company, design and test a 3D printer that will work without gravity, NASA is betting on the potential of 3D printing.
A NASA study found that nearly 1/3 of the parts replaced on the International Space Station could have been 3D printed, which would have prevented billions of dollars in spare parts from being stored on the station. The potential causes such excitement that there have even been discussions on 3D printing an entire space station or space ship, but that seems to be many years away at this point.
While Mission St. does not see itself in space (well, not yet) we do see ourselves as the first 3D printer many of the future designers, engineers and scientist who are going to 3D print the first space shuttle will use. By making the 3D printing experience fun and exciting we hope to inspire a new generation to 3D print the world and help NASA get one step closer to again changing our lives.