Apparently Earth-bound 3D printing isn’t enough for the men and women at NASA. Soon they’ll be launching another round of their own 3D printed technologies out of this world.
According to a recent article on the technology website CNET, NASA is partnering with U.S. 3D printing firms to print 3D parts. NASA tells the publication that their mission is to use the parts on the space organization’s Orion spacecraft. Orion is scheduled to launch into outer space in December 2019. That mission will be unmanned, though NASA does say they plan to man a flight on-board Orion to the vicinity of the moon in the early 2020s.
In all, more than 100 parts will be 3D printed and used in the construction of the spacecraft. This will be NASA’s first time using 3D printed parts on a spacecraft manned with astronauts that will be going into deep space, the article notes, but not the first time the agency has used 3D printed technologies. A 3D printer was installed on the International Space Station in 2014, and a year prior, NASA used printed components on a rocket test.
NASA officials said they chose 3D printing for the same reasons many other businesses and consumers around the world do: it’s cost effective, allows for small batch printing, and provides far more design freedom than traditional manufacturing. And it’s a pretty cool printing method to boot.
From Earth To Space — And Back Again
While NASA believes that 3D printed parts are worthwhile investments for their high-capacity spacecraft, the technology has many everyday applications for folks back on Earth. As we’ve noted in numerous previous posts on this blog, 3D printing has helped build micro homes in the Netherlands, aided doctors in producing artificial anatomical parts, and is even being considered in the production of edible food. Such a wide and varied range of uses for three-dimensional printing virtually guarantees its role in future innovation.
At 3D Quick Printing, we strive to be at the forefront of these innovations. We’ve helped individuals, organizations, and businesses large and small throughout the UK create affordable three-dimensional projects. Whether you’re looking for models, prototypes, moldings or finished products, we can help you quickly achieve your 3D printing goals. Why not see for yourself today?