By: Ozi Ojukwu
I believe that making advancements in technology is one of the greatest ways we glorify God. God, as the Creator, made this world filled with all sorts of natural resources. When we take what we have and make things to improve the world, we are mirroring God as makers. You can see this in the field of 3D printing. Although you may know about 3D printing as it relates to prosthetics, 3D printing is used in a lot of other industries including the fashion and automotive enterprises. It is also being used in humanitarian ways, especially in the fields of education and healthcare. I’ll briefly discuss the future of 3D printing as it relates to these spheres.
In the fashion industry, 3D printing has been used to design dresses and jewelry. According to Sculpteo.com, Danit Peleg, a Jewish fashion designer, designed a collection of garments for her graduate project all on 3D printers from her home. Surprisingly, she had no background experience in this technology. According to Peleg’s site, her vision is that anyone would be able to “buy files and print clothes at home or in designated stores.” Visitors to her site can even design a bomber jacket on their laptops, although the cost for its printing is an arm and a leg – $1,500!
What about the automotive industry? Jeff Kerns, writing for MachineDesign, reports that 3D printing is making cars “stronger and lighter.” He tells the story of Local Motors; 5 years ago, they printed their very first 3D printed car. In 2016, they had 3 of these models as well as an autonomous 3D printed shuttle called Olli. According to Sean O’ Kane, writing for The Verge, the makers were interested in making sure their shuttle was safe, considering people would likely get nervous if they found out that it was 3D printed as well as autonomous. They performed two crash tests to ensure that it was sturdy; the structure of the shuttle held together even at the speed of 25 mph.
Finally, 3D printing has even impacted the social services, healthcare, and educational industries. Annie Rosenthal reports that the UN is including 3D printing as a part of the earthquake response in Nepal, “including printing customized pipe parts necessary for sanitation infrastructure.” She also says that 3D printing in medicine has enabled the production of such tools as umbilical cord clips and 3D-printed artificial hearts.
In the educational industry, the United States is making its way with 3D printing. An article from 3Dnatives.com says that there have been various summer camps set up to teach kids about 3D printing from an early age. Even in higher education, 3D printing has begun making an impact. The University of Florida has “started an initiative with a National Science Foundation-funded program called iDigFossils, which offers curriculum on complex subjects in science, using 3D printed fossil replicas securing future generations with 3D printing in education.”
3D printing is one of the greatest advancements that our world is benefiting from. All of this should cause us to give glory to God for the ability to discover and create things to better enjoy life here on earth.
Richardot, A. (2018, January 24). 3D printed fashion: Why is additive manufacturing interesting for fashion? https://www.sculpteo.com/blog/2018/01/24/3d-printed-fashion-why-is-additive-manufacturing-interesting-for-fashion/
Kerns, J. (2016, November 14). How 3D printing is changing auto manufacturing. https://www.machinedesign.com/3d-printing/how-3d-printing-changing-auto-manufacturing
O’Kane, S. (2019, March 8). Local Motors wants to prove 3D-printed self-driving shuttles are safe. https://www.theverge.com/2019/3/8/18255176/local-motors-olli-3d-printed-self-driving-shuttle-crash-test-footage
Rosenthal, A. (2018, May 1). How 3D printing could revolutionize the future of development. https://medium.com/@plus_socialgood/how-3d-printing-could-revolutionize-the-future-of-development-54a270d6186d
Is the implementation of 3d printing in education a necessity? (29 August 2018). https://www.3dnatives.com/en/3d-printing-in-education-290820184/