From helping to heal a dog to creating teaching aids for visually impaired students and making parts on-demand for a fire department, the Gigabot has been used by caring people to help others in numerous cases, but the re:3D team itself is also dedicated to using it to make the world a better place. The Gigabot has traveled all over the world to allow people in developing countries to secure employment and manufacture for themselves. Co-Founder Samantha Snabes has been working in Puerto Rico post-Hurricane Maria to 3D print coral reefs that will replace the natural ones destroyed by the hurricane. Even better, she’s using plastic water bottles as printing material, and that’s where re:3D’s next focus will be – developing a pellet extruder that will allow the Gigabot to print with recycled material. Right now they have a prototype, but the next step is to take it to a final product.
Luckily, re:3D now has $1 million to help it do so. While that top award had intiially been intended for one winner, re:3D was one of two $1 million winners, as the Creator Awards judges chose to award two inspiring endeavors. Also coming out on top was Global Vision 2020, a Maryland-based company that provides inexpensive prescription eyeglasses for people in impoverished locations. Snabes was so overwhelmed at winning the award that she actually fell to her knees on the stage.
re:3D created the first prototype of the pellet extruder after winning the Scale Award in the earlier rounds of the Creator Awards in the company’s hometown of Austin, Texas. With the prize money from the final competition, it should have more than enough to finish the final product and allow Gigabots everywhere to be used as recycling machines.
“My employees are now getting healthcare!” she exclaimed.
The other winners included:
“Winning the $1 million would provide us the financial resources to not only refine our pellet printer prototype to accept ground-up plastic water bottles, but also to allow us to engineer a grinder, dryer, and feeder system to allow people to truly manufacture from waste onsite,” said re:3D Creative Director Morgan Hamel in a blog post prior to the awards ceremony. “It’s been our mission from the start to create a standalone system that could serve as an on-site factory, allowing a user to 3D print directly from waste.”
- Andiamo – a startup that provides custom 3D printed orthotics, launching a little over three years ago with a crowdfunding campaign
- Cadus – an independent aid organization, currently providing humanitarian aid in Syria
- Eye Control – a provider of technology that allows “locked-in” individuals to communicate only with eye movements
- Byte Back – a company whose mission is to improve economic opportunity by providing computer training and career preparation to underserved residents of the Washington, D.C. area
- Bunker Labs – a nonprofit that provides military veterans with resources to start their own businesses
- Eat Offbeat – a company that delivers meals prepared by refugees living in New York
Microsoft Teamwork Award – $36,500
- WeThrive – a collective of undergraduates that mentors and teaches life skills through entrepreneurship to youth of under-resourced communities
The Community Giver Award went to Carolyn Jensen, Felipe Barreiros, Carla Cornejo and Wes Hamilton. Congratulations to all of the winners, and thank you for the work that you do.
Discuss this and other 3D printing topics at 3DPrintBoard.com or share your thoughts below.
You May Also Like
Surgeons Turning to 3D Printing & Pre-Surgical Planning for Jaw Surgeries in Korea
In ‘Comparison of time and cost between conventional surgical planning and virtual surgical planning in orthognathic surgery in Korea,’ authors Si-Yeon Park, Dae-Seok Hwang, Jae-Min Song, and Uk-Kuy Kim explore...
Interview with Korean Firm Graphy on Developing Cutting Edge Photopolymers for 3D Printing
Whereas FDM knowledge has been spread far and wide DLP and SLA learnings are often locked away behind closed doors. Only recently have we started to see many low-cost SLA...
Interview with 3DGuru’s Inbo Song on 3D Printing in Korea
We’re all familiar with Terry Wohlers and his eponymous report. What you may not know is that there is also a Korean Terry, Inbo Song. He provides companies with research,...
Interview with Lizy Shin of Carima on DLP 3D Printing for Manufacturing
Korean companies are few and far between in 3D printing. Given the advanced state of the Korean economy and their leadership in things such as chips, phones, and other electronics,...
View our broad assortment of in house and third party products.