Thursday, March 6, 2014
3D Printers Used in School
A technology NASA will be sending into space later this year is being used by students in Middleton. Kromrey Middle School is one of few in Dane County to have 3D printers right in the classroom.
"I thought they were used by special effects crews," said 7th grader, Brandon Dunk.
So when Dunk found out he'd be using a 3D printer at school, he was thrilled.
"It's a real life object that forms right before you," said Dunk.
Dunk is part of Jeremy Dimpfl's technology class at Kromrey Middle School where two 3D printers were just introduced this year.
"It's a combination of a lot of parts," said Dunk.
He's been working on a canon he designed.
"It's very cool to see your dream being realized in a couple hours," said Dunk.
"As the 3D printer prints, it sends down layers," explained Dimpfl.
But this technology, also known as additive manufacturing, has even gone as far as creating a prosthetic hand for a 5 year old South African boy last year and will even be used in space this fall to create tools.
3D printers have been around since the 80s, but they're just now making their way into homes and schools.
"What's been cool lately companies have started making prints affordable for schools for homes," said Dimpfl.
"It's a special opportunity to have these here," said Dunk.
Dimpfl said the printers they have are between $1,500 and $2,700.