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The weird and wonderful applications of 3D printing


King of Servers takes a look at some of the weird and wonderful possibilities presented by 3D printing.

Medical innovations

As displayed in this article, doctors in India completed the nation’s first 3D-printed spinal restoration surgery. The patient was a 32-year-old woman who had lost the ability to walk following a severe case of tuberculosis.

A team of surgeons replaced damaged vertebrae in the woman’s spine with a 3D-printed titanium copy. Using CT and MRI scans as reference, they first 3D printed a dummy spine that was perfectly sized for the patient’s needs.

3D printing reaches Hollywood

Academy Award-nominated costume designer Ruth E. Carter recently caught up with Afropunk to discuss how 3D printing played a significant role in creating costumes for her latest film Black Panther.

Many of the costumes in the film utilise African lace, but the introduction of 3D printed components adds a new layer of detail to the fabric.

She told Afropunk: "Part of our process was, you know, we used different techniques to create textures and prints and patterns and one of the ways superheroes are created, we 3D print on fabric which allows you to have a surface that could look beaded but it’s actually molded or screens on fabric. It has a hype to it so that you can make it look like anything."

Reconstruction of a 2,000-year-old mummy's face

A team led by the University of Melbourne in Australia reconstructed the face of an ancient Egyptian woman’s mummified face, which had been stored in the school’s basement for several decades.

Impressive cake moulds

In this video showcasing a series of mouth-watering cakes, the chefs involved used 3D printers to create a particularly unique mould that would complete the look of the cake.

Aquarium additions

The minimalist aquarium in this video was filled with 3D-printed objects inspired by aquatic plant life. The series, entitled Waterscape, was developed by Japanese designer Haruka Misawa and mimics various oceanic flora, including coral.

3D-printed feet

Demonstrating the weird and wonderful capabilities of 3D printing, this video shows a duck that lost both of its feet to frostbite be given the ability to walk again after his rescuer got him a pair of 3D-printed feet.

The 3D skin printer

Researchers at Wake Forest University have created a 3D printer that heals skin, which can be applied on deep wounds and burns. The printer lays healthy skin cells over damaged ones.

3D-printed wheelchair

This bespoke wheelchair was 3D-printed, and was designed to create a more human-centric vehicle for disabled people. Introduced by London-based design group Layer Lab and focusing on comfort, its shape is customised to fit each user.

Find out more about 3D printing
Speak to the King of Servers team today!