Additive Manufacturing Strategies

White House Announces 3D Printed Ornament Design Challenge

ST Medical Devices

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white3Back in February 2013, President Barack Obama stepped forward and delivered his State of the Union Address to the American people. In doing so, he set forth goals for the nation, and outlined several areas which he believes will move the country forward. In the speech, he even discussed 3D printing, stating that the technology had “the potential to revolutionize the way we make almost everything.”

Since then, the White House has hosted a Maker Faire in June 2014, and Obama has mentioned 3D printing on several other occasions. It’s clear that this White House realizes the potential impact that additive manufacturing will have on the country going forward.

In yet another move reinforcing their stance on 3D printing, the White House today announced their ‘3D Printed Ornament Challenge‘. In cooperation with the Smithsonian and Instructables, this challenge asks the nation to 3D model their own printable winter holiday-inspired ornaments.

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“With the democratization of tools and technologies like 3D printing, individuals have more opportunities to take their ideas and turn them into reality,” states the WhiteHouse.gov blog. “Empowering students and adults to create, innovate, tinker, and build their ideas and solutions to problems into reality is at the heart of the Maker Movement.”

white2Designers will have from now until November 5, 2014 to submit their 3D ornament models to Instructables. Once the deadline hits, judges will select several designs which will then be 3D printed and shipped directly to the White House, being displayed within the building during the weeks to follow.

Every holiday season thousands of individuals tour the White House taking in the amazing sights of the decorated historic building. From Christmas trees, to candles, to ornaments of every kind, the White House is quite the festive place this time of year. Your design could be one of several which deck the halls where the President resides.

In addition to having your 3D printed ornament displayed in the White House, the chosen designs will also be displayed on the Smithsonian’s 3D data platform, 3d.si.edu, as well as shipped to the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History, where they will be displayed within the political history division.

This is an awesome initiative by the White House, to not only get children involved in designing, but to also add more fuel to the 3D printing fire, as the technology expands to become an integral part of the American education system. The White House urges teachers to make this design challenge an activity within their classrooms, providing students with a fun, yet challenging project. Let us know if you have participated in this competition. Post your designs, and discuss this idea in the White House 3D Printed Ornament Challenge forum on 3DPB.com.

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