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How 3D Printing helps the Nepal Earthquake relief effort

In April 2015, Nepal was devastated by an enormous earthquake, which destroyed towns and villages, and killed almost 9,000 people. The last 18 months has seen the country struggling to rebuild itself and relying on the help of organizations such as Oxfam...and 3D printing machines.

3D printing helps Nepal Earthquake relief effortRather than relying purely on the traditional tools used in recovery efforts after a disaster such as this, Oxfam is innovatively trialing a new kind of reconstruction response, which involves the use of 3D printing machines.

One of the immediate issues needing to be addressed has been the community’s lack of access to water due to damaged water pipes. With many areas being remote and rural, waiting for replacement parts to arrive was taking far too long.  The portability of a 3D printing machine has meant that specific water pipe fittings can be printed onsite and fitted there and then.3D printing

Additive Manufacturing (AM) has been instrumental in helping make the recovery process faster for the country and additional projects are in progress to help with the housing crisis and medical aid. Portability has been a huge factor along with communication between organisations. Aid workers have been able to share customised designs across production sites, which have assisted the productivity of parts required.Water restored

Based on the success of AM out in the field in Nepal, we wonder whether we will now see 3D printers become a permanent addition to every relief workers toolkit?

Read more at 3Ders.org

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