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Monday, August 16, 2010

3D Printer Brings Kids Into Engineering Lab

This 3D Printer creates excitement for this cutting-edge program.

Was your car built before the turn of the new millennium? If so, chances are you’re among millions of Americans who have share a common problem: ill-fitting cup holders.

Peter Grimm, an industrial technology teacher at Southview Middle School in Edina, MN, has challenged his eighth-grade pre-engineering students to find a solution for this messy problem. And the Dimension uPrint™ Personal 3D Printer is helping students find creative answers.

This model was designed and developed using the Dimension 3D printer to fit properly in an existing car cupholder, thus increasing the functionality of the stock cupholder. Items are printed using durable industrial strength ABS Plastic.

Grimm first saw the educational power of 3D printing earlier in his career when he started a Minneapolis school’s partnership with Project Lead the Way (PLTW). PLTW is a national program that provides curriculum and partnerships with the private sector to increase the quantity and quality of engineers and engineering technologists graduating from our educational system.

Weighing the Options

After transferring from Minneapolis to Edina schools, Grimm started the PLTW partnership at Southview and began investigating the purchase of a 3D printer to enhance the program. While teaching in Minneapolis, Grimm had several years of experience with printers from Dimension and a competitor. “The Dimension printer was just better suited for the educational environment,” said Grimm. “The cost, ease of use, and durability of the printed models produced led me to choose a Dimension 3D Printer.”

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