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Technologies 2018, 6(1), 30; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6010030

Development of a Resilient 3-D Printer for Humanitarian Crisis Response

1
Department of Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering, The Pennsylvania State University, State College, PA 16801, USA
2
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Michigan Technological University, Houghton, MI 49931, USA
3
Humanitarian Engineering and Social Entrepreneurship Program, The Pennsylvania State University, State College, PA 16801, USA
4
Department of Electronics and Nanoengineering, School of Electrical Engineering, Aalto University, 02150 Espoo, Finland
5
Department of Materials Science & Engineering, Michigan Technological University, Houghton, MI 49931, USA
6
Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering, Michigan Technological University, Houghton, MI 49931, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 12 February 2018 / Revised: 1 March 2018 / Accepted: 1 March 2018 / Published: 9 March 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Rapid Manufacturing Technologies)
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Abstract

Rapid manufacturing using 3-D printing is a potential solution to some of the most pressing issues for humanitarian logistics. In this paper, findings are reported from a study that involved development of a new type of 3-D printer. In particular, a novel 3-D printer that is designed specifically for reliable rapid manufacturing at the sites of humanitarian crises. First, required capabilities are developed with design elements of a humanitarian 3-D printer, which include, (1) fused filament fabrication, (2) open source self-replicating rapid prototyper design, (3) modular, (4) separate frame, (5) protected electronics, (6) on-board computing, (7) flexible power supply, and (8) climate control mechanisms. The technology is then disclosed with an open source license for the Kijenzi 3-D Printer. A swarm of five Kijenzi 3-D printers are evaluated for rapid part manufacturing for two months at health facilities and other community locations in both rural and urban areas throughout Kisumu County, Kenya. They were successful for their ability to function independently of infrastructure, transportability, ease of use, ability to withstand harsh environments and costs. The results are presented and conclusions are drawn about future work necessary for the Kijenzi 3-D Printer to meet the needs of rapid manufacturing in a humanitarian context. View Full-Text
Keywords: 3-D printing; additive manufacturing; disaster relief; distributed manufacturing; open hardware; open source hardware; humanitarian engineering; humanitarian logistics; rapid manufacturing; remote manufacturing 3-D printing; additive manufacturing; disaster relief; distributed manufacturing; open hardware; open source hardware; humanitarian engineering; humanitarian logistics; rapid manufacturing; remote manufacturing
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Savonen, B.L.; Mahan, T.J.; Curtis, M.W.; Schreier, J.W.; Gershenson, J.K.; Pearce, J.M. Development of a Resilient 3-D Printer for Humanitarian Crisis Response. Technologies 2018, 6, 30.

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