Two interesting stories crossed the wire recently which show 3D printing using spare parts and creating spare parts. Circle of life!
France 24 reported that a Togolese geographer named Afaté Gnikou has created the “first entirely recycled 3D printer” out of spare electronics parts like mainframes and scanners, which apparently are increasingly cluttering up his country courtesy of European dumpers. Knowing that productized 3D printers are out of the price range for many in his country, Gnikou believes that making 3D printers out of e-waste can open up the technology to people who otherwise wouldn’t benefit from it.
According to a recent report from Solving the E-waste Problem, 50 million tons of discarded electronic and electrical equipment were generated globally in 2012, which averages out to about 7 kg per person. This influx of waste could reach 65 million tons in 2017. According to experts, somewhere between 50 to 85 percent of this waste ends up in Nigeria, Ghana, and Togo. Furthermore, by 2017, Africa is expected to generate more e-waste than the European Union.
We encourage you to check out the full story. It’s really inspirational.
Meanwhile, from the UK comes news that a Siemens researcher is printing Christmas trees out of high-strength special steel. According to the company, employee Olaf Rehme is using a 3D printer to create one tree per day, albeit only two inches high. Siemens believes that 3D-printed spare parts using the same steel can have utility for manufacturers, too.
It seems like every day there’s news of another amazing thing happening because of 3D printers. We’ll be following all the developments for you at Technology Tell Network.