3D printing technology is making its way into school curricula around the world. As the tech becomes more commonplace, younger students are exposed to and steeped in its possibilities. One student who was particularly captivated by the capabilities of 3D printing was 12-year-old Chinmaya Arya of Laurel High School in Delhi, India. Arya was first introduced to the machine through the 3Dexter technology lab at his school, sometimes staying until 7:00 at night so that he could continue his explorations.
He was so captivated by his school’s 3D printer that after eight months of continual usage at school he decided to create one of his own so that he could use it whenever he wanted.
Prem Kumar, Product Designer at 3Dexter, described the young boy’s enthusiasm:
“The passion pouring out of his eyes and his will to locally procure all the elements of the 3D printer himself forced us to focus on the kid more than anything.”
Posts about his desires on the 3Dexter Facebook page received an outpouring of support, including from Arya’s own family members. Arya worked for 42 days and overcame numerous obstacles to build the machine which he then dubbed “Cuxem,” which means “science” according to Arya. With a build volume of 300 mm2 and a resolution of 100 microns, the 3D printer is the first to be built by someone his age in India.
The previous record for youngest person to build their own 3D printer in India was held by 15-year-old Angad Daryani back in 2014. Daryani similarly exhibited a fascination and capacity for technology from a very young age, having built his first humanoid robot at the tender age of just eight. His 3D printer was created after dropping out of traditional schooling and working to start his own business selling a 3D printer he developed. His SharkBot is supposed to be able to print any material other than metal and be available at a lower cost than those that are being imported into India currently.
Arya appears to be hot on Daryani’s heels and already has plans to create more 3D printers to contribute to the 3Dexter laboratory as well as to sell to his friends for their use. His hope is that the next 3D printer he builds will have a metal body.
Arya is just one example of what can happen when children are provided with opportunities to interact with these advanced technologies at a young age.
“We really want this story to go out and encourage people to make their dream a reality,” 3Dexter Co-Founder Raunak Singhi tells 3DPrint.com of the project.
Started in 2015 by seven friends, 3Dexter has worked to change the Indian educational system by providing experiential learning and comprehensive technological solutions for education. The question is: are students such as Arya the exception or the rule when given the opportunity to learn in an immersive education program? How many other innovative young people are out there just waiting for the lightbulb to flicker on? The team at 3Dexter believes the numbers are not insignificant and, so far, they’ve been successfully demonstrating their case.
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