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NASA, ISS, 3-D printing, Barry Wilmore

NASA 3D prints on the ISS

NASA, ISS, 3-D printing, Barry Wilmore

History has been made as the 3D printer on board the ISS created a faceplate, which became the first item ever to be 3-D printed in space.

The printer was taken up to the space station earlier this month and was installed on 17 November by astronaut Barry Wilmore. After a series of tests to fine-tune the calibration, ground control commanded the printer to 3D print the plate.

The primary objective of the experiment was to see if microgravity altered the bonds created by the machine and it was discovered that the bonds were strengthened in the low gravity environment.

After another re-calibration, the team will attempt a second printing.