EKOCYCLE™ Printer Grant

Tags: 3Dprinter
Personhours: 1
EKOCYCLE™ Printer Grant Edited by Max

Task: Post final essay to obtain 3D printer from EKOCYCLE™

Coca Cola, 3D Systems, will.i.am and FIRST got together to offer 1600 3D printers to FIRST teams!

Application Essay

The demand for robotics at our school is higher than we can fund as an inner-city Title 1 school. Even so, we were recently ranked as the #1 school in Texas for children at risk and #7 in the nation of “schools doing the most with the least.” Please read more about our rankings here and here.

As a team we also actively promote Robotics and STEM education in our community through participation in Maker-Faires, public demonstrations and competitions where we plan to demo our EKOCYCLE™ printer. We would also share the printer with our sister FTC and FRC teams, as well as faculty.

We have already begun designing 3D printable parts for our robot this season. We published our first design and subsequent revisions on Thingiverse. We have further improvements in mind for this part and other parts on the drawing board. Read more here.

We are excited about the EKOCYCLE™ Cube printer for many reasons. Foremost it seems to be the first printer designed to use recycled material. For a prior robot we formed HDPE sheets out of used milk jugs to make our ring basket for Ring It Up. Shredded bits of HDPE were melted together in a sandwich maker to create the sheets. We want to increase awareness through the practice of using recycled materials, so we will return spent cartridges to 3D Systems and recycle used prints. Plus it’s just cool to turn empty Coke bottles into robots!

We also think that the EKOCYCLE™ PET-based material will create parts with flex and tensile strength that should perform better than ABS in the robot arena. Parts should be more resilient and able to handle shocks and accelerations. We hope you consider our need, desire and ability to make the most of an EKOCYCLE™.

Written on October 16, 2014