The FIFA World Cup kicks off today in Brazil, with the commencing game between home team Brazil, and Croatia at 4 PM EST. FIFA believes that the 2014 World Cup will be the most watched TV event in history. They are estimating that over 3.2 billion viewers will tune in to watch the world’s most popular sport, this month and next.
Organizers of the event have been quick to adopt new technologies. The World Cup will be able to be accessed on a variety of mobile devices, allowing fans to follow their team no matter where they are. In addition, 3D printing will play a huge role in the opening ceremony today, as a paraplegic will stand under the power of a partially 3D printed exoskeleton, and kick off the first ball to open the 2014 World Cup.
Because of the connection that 3D printing already will play in the open ceremonies, I thought it would be of interest to look at some other ways in which 3D printing technology can be combined with the world’s biggest sporting event. Check them out below:
Entire 3D Printed Soccer Stadium Board Game
iMaterialise got in on the festivities today with their very own 3D printed soccer stadium board game. The players are 3D printed and then attached to the board via tiny springs. The exact details on how this game works or where to download the models for printing have not been released yet, it certainly looks impressive.
This is an interesting design, created by a Dutch company called 3Dwergen. It’s part koozie, part Samba shaker. Once printed, a can of beer or a soft drink will fit snugly into its opening. Just like a koozie, it will keep your drink cold, and your hands warm. Once you guzzle down that beer or soft drink, you can break the pull ring of the can off, place it inside, and turn the can upside down in the holder. Your Koozie is now a Samba shaker, which can be used to help you cheer for your favorite team. The free design can be downloaded here.
3D Printed Finger Soccer
As you wait for your favorite team to play, why not participate in some soccer yourself…. finger soccer that is! Thanks to LeapFrog, you can now download an entire 3D printable finger soccer game. This includes 4 finger boots, a ball, and 2 goals. Details to print these out for free can be found here.
Nike’s 3D Printed Sports Bag
A couple of weeks ago Nike got in on the action, by releasing this partially 3D printed sports bag. The bag is actually being used by a select few players who will be participating in this year’s event. This includes Brazil’s Neymar Jr., England’s Wayne Rooney, and Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo. The entire base of this bag was 3D printed, and attaches the leather upper to the straps without the need for any adhesives. Nike has been known for their use of 3D printing in several of their designs. Last year’s Super Bowl featured Nike cleats which were manufactured with the help of 3D printing.
The 3D Printed ExoSkeleton
As mentioned earlier in this article, the opening ceremony of the World Cup will feature a paraplegic individual getting up out of a wheelchair, and kicking out the first ball of the event. They will be able to achieve this amazing feat with the help of a specially designed exoskeleton, which has been partially 3D printed. Further details about this amazing exoskeleton can be found here. Technology is captivating the world, and there is no better way to get the world excited about what tomorrow will bring than to air it live in front of billions of people around the globe.
Do you have your own 3D design related to the World Cup? Have you printed out anything we have discussed above? Let us know in the 2014 World Cup 3D printing forum thread at 3DPB.com.
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