PADT Intern Wins NASA and ASME 3D Printing Competition

We are very proud of our Additive Manufacturing intern Austin Suder who just won Future Engineers “Two for the Crew” Challenge, presented by the ASME Foundation and NASA.  The challenge asked to invent a multifunctional object that combined two items into one for 3-D printing by crew members aboard the International Space Station (ISS). As a winner he will receive a trip to Washington DC, a MakerBot 3D printer donated to the orginization of his choice, and best of all, his design will be printed on the ISS and used by the astronauts.

Austin’s design was a Carabiner Tool Clip that combined a way to easo;u secure a tool and hold the sockets and drivers that the tool needs.  After designing the part he then used simulation to iterate on the design with virtual testing, and then he 3D Printed a prototype on his home 3D Printer. Austin started this project by researching what problems the astronauts faced. He found that a big problem was that tools would drift off in the micro-gravity environment of the station.  This was annoying when they are working inside the station, and a critical problem when they are on a space walk.  He also realized that they used a separate “holder” to keep the sockets and screw driver heads that the tool needed. Using this knowledge he developed a simple to operate carabiner to secure the tether on the hand tool to the astronaut and then use that same part to hole the sockets and drivers.

But he did not stop there. He also learned what he could about the MadeInSpace 3D Printer  that is on the station, and adapted the design to make sure the printer could make easily. Austin then used simulation to make sure the design was strong and robust. Then he printed his samples on his own home printer.

Local Phoenix station ABC15 stopped by PADT yesterday to interview Austin and here is their story:

Much of Austin’s knowledge and skill comes from his involvement in his school robotics team, and he will be donating the MakerBot he won to that team.

We hare very proud of Austin’s accomplishments.  He works at PADT as an intern in the Advanced Manufacturing department focused on 3D Printing, doing CAD, running the machines, cleaning parts, and being our in-house expert on desktop 3D Printing.  He will be graduating from High School this year and attending ASU as a Mechanical Engineer.  We can not wait to see what he does next!

3D Printing Student Projects at PADT: Visit our Open House to Learn More (Thursday, March 2, 5pm)

Thursday, March 2 is PADT’s annual SciTech Festival Open House, from 5-8pm (click HERE to register). This year, three student groups working on a range of projects will be present to showcase their work, all of which involved some level of 3D printing. Please bring friends and families to meet and discuss ideas with these students from our community.

Formula SAE Team (Arizona State University)

ASU’s Formula SAE team will be onsite with their 2016 cardemonstrating specifically how they used 3D printing to manufacture the functional intake manifolds on these cars. What is specifically interesting is how they have modified their manifold design to improve performance while leveraging the advantages of 3D printing, and also they have evaluated multiple materials and processes over the recent years (FDM, SLS).

Prosthetic Arm Project (BASIS Chandler)

Rahul Jayaraman will be back to discuss how he and 30 students at BASIS Chandler manufactured, assembled and delivered about 20 prosthetic hands to an organization that distributes these to children in need across the world. Rahul and PADT were featured in the news for this event.

Cellular Structures in Nature (BASIS Chandler)

A BASIS Chandler High School senior, Amy Zhang, just started her Senior Research Project with PADT, focusing on a project at the intersection of biology and 3D printing, investigating cellular structures that occur on surfaces in nature, like the wing of a dragonfly or the shell on a turtle or the encasing of a pineapple – all of which are comprised of cellular geometries. Using 3D scanning, image analysis and mathematical methods, Amy hopes to develop models for describing these structures that can then be used in developing design principles for 3D printing. You can learn more on Amy’s blog: http://shellcells.blogspot.com/